Gleaming green-gold; the bouquet has the hallmark edge of struck flint, adding immeasurably to its complexity, but also laying the way for the palate to follow; here is a Chardonnay that stands apart and aloof from all other Chardonnays in Australia; its power is as formidable, and as hard to explain, as a black hole in space. It just is. Talking about its balance is far easier, for there is an inexorable logic about the way the fruit, oak and acid are so seamlessly married to each other. 98 points, Wine Companion.
Located in the foothills of the Victorian Alps, Beechworth is a small cool climate region with high continentality. The vineyards enjoy a large number of sunshine hours and are generally planted at altitudes of 400m. A variety of soil types are found with the two dominant ones being ancient sandstone gravel and clay and granitic loams over decomposed gravels and clays. While north or north-easterly slopes are generally favoured, the best sites are located away from higher altitude, cold-air drainage channels, with the risk of frost high in both spring and autumn. Restricted water availability means most vineyards are dry-grown. A region of small boutique producers, Beechworth is best known for premium Chardonnay, Shiraz and Pinot Noir, although plantings of Italian varieties including Sangiovese and Nebbiolo also show great promise.