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The Oakridge 864 Funder & Diamond Drive Block Chardonnay is one of the giants of Australian Chardonnay. Crafted by one of the country’s most gifted makers of the variety, this single block wine is considered by many as a benchmark wine for the region.
The 2014 vintage is characterised by coiled power and intensity. The impact of powerful fruit beautifully framed by trimmings of fine French oak and some savoury lees character. Complexity tempered with an easy approachability. It’s a wine to behold.
The reviews for this release have been outstanding with James Halliday awarding this vintage 97 points and 95 points from the Wine Front’s Gary Walsh. This is an excellent release of this much revered future icon of the Yarra Valley.
What It Tastes Like
“Prophetically described as a late bloomer needing more time when tasted a year ago, now quite simply superb. Upper Yarra chardonnay at its best, with another level of complexity, depth and length achieved with unmatched finesse.” - James Halliday (Australian Wine Companion)
*97 points.** “Prophetically described as a late bloomer needing more time when tasted a year ago, now quite simply superb. Upper Yarra chardonnay at its best, with another level of complexity, depth and length achieved with unmatched finesse.”
- James Halliday (Australian Wine Companion)
95 points “Lime, white nectarine, honey and cashew, struck match and sweet spices. Medium bodied, a smooth glossy cruise through the mouth, with cool acidity, and a smoky quartz-like feel pulling it through the back palate. Delivers layers of complexity and interest, while sticking to the first rule of wine; being good to drink. Delightful. It’s in the slot now, though likely to improve further.”
- Gary Walsh (The Wine Front)
Funder & Diamond vineyard, Drive Block. North facing at 240 meters above sea level. Close planted in the red volcanic soil of Wandin East in 1990 using the P58 clone.
Vintage A cold and windy spring resulted in poor flowering and very low crops. Ripening conditions were ideal – long and slow, resulting in wines with outstanding purity and balance. Flowering occurred in early November, fruit set in January and harvest on March 7th at 12.4⁰ baume.
Winemaking All grapes were hand harvested and sorted prior to whole bunch pressing directly to French oak puncheons for natural fermentation. 25% of the barrels were new. Post-fermentation, the wine was matured on its fermentation lees for 10 months in barrels followed by a further 6 months in tank prior to bottling after a single filtration.
Closure: Screw Cap
Bottle Size: 750ml
Drink Until: 2026
About the Producer
Oakridge is one of the Yarra Valley’s most respected wineries. Under the direction of master winemaker Dave Bicknell, it has been a major player in defining the modern styles of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in the Yarra over the last decade. From the elite 864 range to the amazing value Over The Shoulder range, there’s quality at the core of everything Oakridge puts its hand to.
The Yarra Valley stands tall as one of the country’s finest cool-climate wine regions. Only a short jaunt from Melbourne, the Yarra has become a tourist hot-spot for its stunning scenery, high quality produce, and of course, as the home to some of the country’s most iconic wine producers. From the extraordinarily elegant Cabernets and Syrahs that populate the ‘Valley floor’, to the precise and complex versions of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that hail from the higher climes of the Yarra, this region is diverse and in a state of change. As temperatures rise and phylloxera infiltrates each pocket of the Yarra Valley, the range of alternative varieties from continental Europe is sure to increase to create a more colourful picture of the region. The Yarra embodies so much of what is great about the modern Australian wine scene.
Australian Chardonnay is a seductive variety that comes in all shapes and sizes. From the toasty and voluptuous to the lean, flinty and minerally, there is a Chardonnay out there to suit everyone. Australia’s developing prowess with this variety has been marked by the international community with wine writers such as Jancis Robinson marvelling at the outstanding value to be had right across the country. The prestige brands of Margaret River offer wines of deep flavour and power, often crafting fuller-figured Chardonnay of outstanding quality. The cooler-climate wines from the Yarra Valley, Tasmania and the like are more focused and linear, building complexity around a backbone of pristine acidity. Whatever your preference, there is an Australian Chardonnay to enchant all comers.
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