Highly prized, beautifully pitched and evocative, Pierro
Chardonnay is truly one of Australia's greatest Chardonnays. To put it in context, if Leeuwin Art Series is the Margaret River Chardonnay ace, then Pierro is the king! It is the second highest ranked Margaret River Chardonnay in the Langton's Classification.
Typically fragrant and minerally with lemon curd grapefruit, white peach, cashew nut aromas and flavours, the wine displays lovely mid-palate richness and underlying new oak; a fresh indelible acidity cuts across the palate giving further dimension.
The wine is vinified in the Burgundian fashion with barrel fermentation in new and one-year-old French oak. Malo-lactic fermentation, regular lees stirring and lees contact takes place over a 12 month maturation period.
2008 Pierro Chardonnay, Margaret River - Langton’s Classification – Outstanding - Great Wine Estate of Western Australia - Release date – Around January 2010
I have long admired the wines of Pierro and the happy days of the Wilyabrup Descent; a barrel race down the Wilyabrup River from the old Ribbon Vale Winery into the dam at Pierro. The latter was discontinued because of insurance. Pierro however has gone from strength to strength. The fastidious attention to detail, yet apparent laissez-faire approach seem almost contradictory, yet this encapsulates the character of Dr Mike Peterkin. His laconic laid back seriousness could almost describe the style of wine. There is plenty of terroir and personality Pierro Chardonnay. It invariably stumps up the goods in comparative tastings. While it is idiosyncratic and utterly Australian, it is also fits into the idiom of a grand cru type wine. The sheer consistency and overall quality is outstanding. It is a hugely satisfying wine and one of Australia’s great Chardonnays,
The Pierro Vineyard is one of the loveliest vineyards in Margaret River. It is tended with extreme care and while not officially organic, low input principals apply. Mike Peterkin was preaching sustainability and equilibrium long before it became fashionable. The style has been a longstanding foil to Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay. Pierro Chardonnay tends to be a touch more powerful and richer with creamier texture and generous minerally flavours. A bead of acidity cuts along the palate giving freshness and vitality. These beautiful and limited production wines are fun and deliciously serious. Pierro Chardonnay is vinified in Burgundian fashion with barrel fermentation in new French oak, lees stirring (battonage) and lees contact. Pierro chardonnay possesses incredible intensity, generosity, complexity and concentration. A fresh indelible acidity cuts across the palate giving further dimension.
The 2008s look very impressive with strong cashew nut/ lemon curd/ leesy/ ginger oak aromas and sweet lemon curd/ grapefruit flavours, plenty of underlying new oak, richness, body and weight. A core of indelible acidity livens up the palate. It finishes a touch al-dente, long and sweet. It’s incredibly fragrant, minerally and fresh. It will be an outstanding vintage for Pierro and one with the structure to age. Andrew Caillard, MW
Located three hours south of Perth, Margaret River is Western Australia’s most prestigious wine-growing region. Serious vineyard development began only in the late 1960’s following the publication of a report by John Gladstones in 1965 stating that the area had a similar climate to Pomerol or St Emilion, with low frost risk, plenty of sunshine and equable temperatures within the growing season promoting even ripening. Margaret River’s climate is warm and maritime, with some cooling influence provided by southeast trade winds. The soils derive from granitic and a gneissic rock over which laterite has formed. The region can be divided in three sub-regions: the cooler south between Yallingup and Karridale with predominantly lateritic gravelly loamy sands and sandy loams; the warm and sunnier Willyabrup in the centre with predominantly gravelly loams, but some gritty sandy loams and granitic gravels; and Margaret River in the north with similar soils, but slightly cooler temperatures. This is entirely consistent with style; the wines from Willyabrup being more generous than the highly structured wines of the north and the elegant styles of the south. Margaret River is best known for high quality Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc Semillon blends and top notch Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux blends. Over the years, the region has established an astonishing reputation illustrating a consistency in quality and a strongly focused winemaking culture.