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Murdoch Hill’s ‘Artisan’ series is where winemaker Michael Downer really gets to unleash and express himself. This ‘Tilbury’ Chardonnay is never around for long, but gee it’s a good wine.
Coming from a single vineyard in the Piccadilly Valley sub-region of the Adelaide Hills, this is very much a ‘vineyard’ wine. It’s whole bunch and whole berry fermented, with older French oak and only partial malolactic fermentation resulting a focused and savoury wine that really shows off its site.
It received a great 95 point review from Gary Walsh (“So classy. So smooth. Great to drink.”), and if you love your premium Hills Chardonnay then this needs to be in your cellar or on your dining table. It’s terrific.
What It Tastes Like
“White peach, almond and oatmeal, touch of spice and struck match. Light to medium bodied, cool flavours of ripe lemon and white peach, almond cream, gentle flintiness and honeyed gloss, pure but unobtrusive acidity, and a silky almond finish. So classy. So smooth. Great to drink.” - Gary Walsh
95 points. “I have to out myself by revealing I?m acid tolerant, so the concern of Michael Downer about the acidity of the Champagne clone G9V7 wouldn?t have worried me as much, and my comments on the Murdoch Hill standard Chardonnay apply here. That said, this is the better wine, with more grip and presence.”
- James Halliday (Australian Wine Companion)
95 points. “It’s becoming clear that 2015 was a very good vintage for Chardonnay in the Adelaide Hills. This from a vineyard in the cool reaches of the Picadilly Valley.
White peach, almond and oatmeal, touch of spice and struck match. Light to medium bodied, cool flavours of ripe lemon and white peach, almond cream, gentle flintiness and honeyed gloss, pure but unobtrusive acidity, and a silky almond finish. So classy. So smooth. Great to drink.”
- Gary Walsh (The Wine Front)
VINEYARD: From a single vineyard in the Piccadilly Valley standing at an altitude of 525m, sourced from 18 year old vines with a mix of clones. The elevation and position of the Piccadilly Valley make this a unique cool sight giving naturally high acidity with a depth of fruit that displays elegance and finesse.
Winemaking: The hand picked grapes were part whole berry & whole bunch pressed, due to the natural balance of the fruit no acidification was required before fermentation in older French oak. Partial malolactic fermentation was allowed with a touch of lees stirring to add complexity and depth whilst been careful to keep the wine focused to display the unique qualities of the vineyard.
The Tilbury Story: The Tilbury is an open carriage with large wheels making it a light, fast and dangerous carriage with an elaborate suspension system for a softer ride.
Bottle Size: 750ml
About the Producer
Murdoch Hill is a family-owned winery captained by talented young winemaker Michael Downer. Downer splits the range in two: his clean-cut, consistently high-quality ‘Estate’ wines are excellent value and perpetually reliable, and his quirky, adventurous ‘Artisan’ wines which offer an alt-styling and different shades of the region. With the combination of high-quality Adelaide Hills fruit grown on the family estate and the undoubted talent in the winery, this is a Hills producer on the up and up!
The Adelaide Hills may be the most energised wine region in the country. The sense of exploration and creativity amongst the tribe of talented young winemakers in this region is unparralelled. The Hills has become crucible of Australian wine talent, offering an array of varieties, from classics such as Shiraz, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, to new varieties like Nebbiolo and Grüner Veltliner for the younger generation to play with. Every vintage brings new colour and complexity to the rich wine, food and produce culture of this cool climate region.
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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