Grigsby Chardonnay 2022

Grigsby Chardonnay 2022

Grigsby is our close planted, certified organic Chardonnay block planted in 2007. Named in honour of our viticulturalist Lucas Grigsby, who has been with us since 1987; this block continues our explorations into high-density viticulture, this time with Chardonnay.

  • Viticulture
  • Winemaking
  • Tasting Note
  • Reviews

Grigsby Chardonnay is made from a 0.87 acre vineyard block, originally planted in 2007 and grafted to Chardonnay clone Bernard 76 in 2019. The vine spacing is 1m and the row spacing is 1.2m, and the row orientation is north-south. The soils are made up of dark clay over weathered basalt and limestone.

Handpicked parcels of fruit were whole bunch pressed, settled over night, and racked to barrels for a wild yeast fermentation in French oak hogsheads; approximately 30% was new oak. Malolactic fermentation occurred on 70% of the blend, with the remainder blocked. The wine was left on lees unstirred for 10 months prior to blending and bottling.

        The 2022 vintage offers a wine of richness and depth, with breadth and concentration in the flavours, finding energy and focus on the finish.

        96 points. Light-medium yellow colour with a rich and toasty/oaky bouquet that enshrines nougat, roasted hazelnuts and creamy lees derived facets. A very complex chardonnay, full and rich and generous in the mouth with a long-lasting aftertaste. A ripping chardonnay. Huon Hooke,

        95 points. This is rich. If chardonnay flavour is your desire, then come hither. It offers a liberal serve of grilled peach flavour, with nectarine, citrus, sweet spice and cedarwood oak, and then layers custard powder characters through the aftertaste. It’s an excellent, well-tailored rendition of the fuller chardonnay style. Importantly it runs fresh and lengthy to close, with hints of reductive character there too, which is a bonus. Campbell Mattinson,

        2023 Vintage

        The 2023 growing season started off cold and wet. For the first time since 2011 our dam was full, and in fact overflowed for most of October and November (rainfall for the calendar year of 2022 was 800mm). Budburst was slightly behind average timing, but crops were down significantly: the bunch counts were low in the first place, we had a mild frost in September and the wet weather finally caught up with us via downy mildew. The rain stopped at the end of December.

        The overall heat accumulation was the same (1338 Growing Degree Days) as 2021, both seasons on the slightly cooler side of average but differing in that the heat for 2023 was more toward the second half of the season. Veraison occurred in February and then we picked Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Gamay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling in March, and Shiraz and Cabernet/Merlot in the first week of April. The picking weather was pleasant and the fruit arrived at the winery in very good condition.

        While quantity was down (especially in Pinot Noir) quality was good: fresh acidity, concentration, colour, tannin and steady fermentations have us looking forward to bottling, and seemingly warmer and drier seasons as El Niño returns.

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