DCB Wines Chardonnay, Yarra Valley
The entry-level Chardonnay from Chris Bendle is made to be enjoyed. Details below are for interest only.
Hand-harvested, the fruit was chilled overnight with 50% pressed whole bunch into tank while the balance was crushed and de-stemmed prior to being pressed. After a day on skins and stems the whole bunch juice was gravity racked off onto 80% seasoned oak before being fermented using wild yeast culture. The balance of the juice rested for three days before being racked off – also being fermented wild. The juice was stirred once per day with the intensity of the stirring increasing as the ferment progressed. The wine was left to rest before being racked off into tank, filtered then bottled.
It’s a pulpy chardonnay with grapefruit, lime and oatmeal flavours pushing confidently through. It came across as flinty at first but it quickly settled to display a wealth of pure, pristine fruit flavour. Elegance gets a good look-in too. This is an Upper Yarra Chardonnay with a good bit of flesh on its bones.
93 points, The Wine Front (September 2020)
Yarra ValleyThe Yarra Valley was first planted by the Ryrie brothers who explored a way through the Snowy Mountains to the Yarra Valley, planting grapes in 1838 just three years after the foundation of Melbourne. A wine industry (developed by Swiss Settlers particularly Hubert de Castella and Baron Guillaume de Pury in the 1850s) thrived during the gold rush era and heyday of the 19th century. However, the end of the gold rush brought the wine industry into decline and it was not until the 1970’s that the modern wine industry started up again. The region is probably Australia’s best-known cool-climate area, yet it is really a patchwork of meso-climates. This varied topography creates an incredible set of variables. Vineyards are planted on elevations of 50 to 400m on varying aspects and management programmes. The more exposed sites are subject to severe spring frosts and winds. Overall, the area experiences a relatively high rainfall pattern and is known for its temperature extremes during ripening. Site selection is crucial, with the best vineyards often located where the original vines were once planted, generally on sandy clay loams and gravels. The Yarra Valley is well known for high quality Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Blends with Shiraz increasingly garnering attention. Sparkling wine production is also extremely important, with many of Australia’s finest examples produced in the region.