For 30 years, from about 1980, the answer to which wine was Australia's best Chardonnay, was relatively simple. It was either Giaconda's Chardonnay or the Leeuwin Art Series, with Pierro challenging in some years. During this time, Penfolds embarked on the 'white Grange' project, the ambition very clear.
A few weeks ago, I tasted the highly acclaimed 2018 Yattarna. It is a very good wine, and as I have a couple of bottles in my cellar I will report on it in the future. However, the wine would not have made me change my view expressed in the previous paragraph.
Then I tasted the 2012 Penfolds Yattarna a few days ago. This wine blew me away. It started with the pungent nose of exotic fruit. The wine is sourced, I believe, from three regions, Adelaide Hills, Henty (Victoria) and Tasmania. As a cool climate wine, you expect citrus the dominant, maybe only flavour. However, this wine shows peach, grapefruit, even some tropical fruits. Biscotti notes round out the palate. This is complex! It remains focused and precise. The overall mouthfeel has some ageing Semillon characteristics as well. Smoothed out acidity, and a gentleness, which is very appealing.
This is the greatest Australian Chardonnay since the 1987 Leeuwin Chardonnay (with apologies to the younger readers).