A new member of the Margaret River elite. This is a classic, pristine and consistently brilliantly made Chardonnay that showcases the increased focus on Margaret River subregions.
According to Dr John Gladstones, in his 1999 paper ‘Terroir in Margaret River’, the region should be divided into six subregions: Yallingup, Carbunup, Wilyabrup, Treeton, Wallcliffe and Karridale. While not part of the official GI (Geographical Indication), these sub-regions are understood and respected by Margaret River vignerons and winemakers. Flamtree’s Sub-Regional Series (S.R.S) explores these distinct areas in Australia's premium wine powerhouse of Margaret River.
To maintain freshness, the fruit is cold stored overnight prior to the whole bunches being pressed into French oak puncheons. Once the temperature reaches the right level, the full wild yeast fermentation begins. According to Flametree, the key to successful wild fermentation is ‘the use of high turbidity juices, minimal sulphur dioxide, low alcohols and juices with good nutrient content.’ Barrel fermented in 40% new French oak puncheons prior to being aged for nine months.
Struck match, grapefruit, dried pear, spice, yoghourt, and subtle vanilla oak. Light and racy, but with flavour, grapefruit and lemon pith bitterness, smoky and savoury on a long precise finish. Modern. Good.
94 points, Gary Walsh, The Wine Front, October 2019.
Very complex and alluring bouquet with plenty of sulfide smokiness, struck-flint and grapefruit. The palate is lively and restrained, delicate yet intense, with a trace of bitterness possibly from phenolics. An intense, refined, taut wine with terrific line, length and tension.
95 points, Huon Hooke, The Real Review, September 2019.
Barrel fermented in 40% new French oak puncheons, the 2018 SRS Wallcliffe Chardonnay repeats the success of previous vintages. A bit of almond-skin toastiness appears on the nose, along with delicate citrus notes. This medium to full-bodied wine was fermented with indigenous yeasts and shows great complexity, combining varied citrus notes with hints of toasted grain and nuts, but also a remarkable, silky texture and a finish of finely crushed stone. It should drink well for up to a decade.
94 points, Wine Advocate (January 2020)
Elegant and very fresh coming up to its third year. Sophisticated winemaking, reacting to the grapes in the press with options still open, not formulaic. Citrus, pear and white peach, all very subtle.
94 points, Wine Companion (January 2020)
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.