Paradise IV Chardonnay, GeelongT
The Paradise IV vineyard site is 2.5 hectares and the varieties grown are Chardonnay, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Paradise IV vintage is always much later than other vineyards in the Geelong region because the site is cooled most summer evenings by south-easterly sea breezes channelling up the Moorabool Valley. This beneficial factor allows flavour development to occur slowly.
The wines have intensity, perfume and balance – they are in a more European style. The vineyard is low-cropped and all fruit is hand-picked. Traditional winemaking techniques are employed with natural ferments and natural malolactic being an integral element of the style and character of the wines. High-quality French oak barrels are selected for use but the style sees the oak disappear into the wines, never dominating them.
Medium to deep yellow, slightly forward colour. The bouquet is shy but complex: malty, yeasty, creamy and vanillan, with a trace of almond. The palate is full and round, the 7 grams/litre acidity is not felt at all, indeed it is pillow-soft. The 28% new oak has been swallowed up by the richness of the wine, as has the 28% malolactic. A superb wine which manages to combine generosity with finesse. (limestone soil; 120 cases made).
95 points, Real Review, May 2018.
Picked late Feb, wild-fermented in French oak (25% new), 30% mlf, 10 months on lees, crossflow filtration. Strong straw-green, this is as elegant as it is complex (or vice versa), with a juicy, soft stone fruit motor before citrussy acidity brightens up the finish. Drink to 2025.
94 points, Wine Companion, April 2018.
Strong hue of green and white gold: meal, white peach enhanced by a perfume of white flowers, and as it opens with breathing, grilled nuts, lemon curd and subtle reductive notes. A powerful wine with texture and roundness on the palate. The oak is hidden, lapped up by the fruit: an ever-changing patina of white peach, lemon and grapefruit pith seasoned with a spicy orange peel character lingers on the palate. This is really an essay in letting go, a wine that has been allowed to follow its own destiny. The lowest alcohol of our Chardonnays at 12.7, it was bottled with minimal winemaking input to show the beauty and power of the Paradise IV Vineyard.
Douglas Neal, Winemaker.
Victoria’s first commercial wine was produced in Geelong by Swiss immigrants in 1845. During the mid- 1800’s Geelong was the largest grape-growing region in Victoria with 400 hectares under vine. When phylloxera struck in the 1870s however, the vines were decimated and it was not until the late 1960’s that the area’s vineyards were re-established. Located about 80 km southwest of Melbourne, Geelong has a cool maritime climate with low rainfall and prevalent cool blustery winds that affect flowering and Franceuit set. Soils are diverse, mostly volcanic over limestone with some lesser quality black soils. The region is dotted primarily with family owned wineries producing small quantities of high quality Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Shiraz & Cabernet Sauvignon.