Giant Steps: 2022 Different Drop Producer of the Year

Our 2022 Producer of the Year goes to the team at Giant Steps in the Yarra Valley. Giant Steps released a flawless suite of wines last year, mostly centred around a near-perfect 2021 harvest for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay in their region.


Their single vineyard offerings were some of the finest wines we tasted this year, from anywhere. The detail and clarity of the Pinot Noirs, in particular, were a thing of beauty. They are powerful wines, each etched in a delicate frame and showcasing the nuance of changing terroir across the Yarra Valley.


Inarguably, they are in the top echelon of all Pinot Noirs produced in this country. Even off a very high base, these wines exceeded themselves this year. They will continue to bring pleasure to those who have some in their collections for many years to come.


"If I had to describe the 2021 wines in one word, it would be 'balance'. You don't get that every year in the Yarra. We did in 2017, 2015 even 2012 but 2021 smokes them all for me..."
- Steve Flamsteed at the 2021 Single Vineyard launch


The Chardonnays, likewise, were outstanding. They showed tension and energy, with the finesse of a cool vintage and remarkable depth of flavour. From the richer examples from the Tarraford and Sexton vineyards all the way up to the nervy, electric Chardonnays from Wombat Creek and Applejack, they were delicious to the last drop.


Last year was a year of transition for the team at Giant Steps, with one of the country's brightest winemaking talents, Melanie Chester, stepping into the role of Head of Winemaking and Viticulture, as long-time Chief Winemaker Steve Flamsteed takes a step back. They have purchased a new vineyard high up in the hills of the Upper Yarra. Mel is currently designing a new winery and cellar door which will soon perch on the top of the Sexton vineyard. The tireless work in their vineyards continues to yield increasingly better results.


Even at the height of their powers, the relentless pursuit of quality at Giant Steps marches on. With Mel in the hot seat, and Flamsteed in a mentoring role, it would seem, somehow, the best is still yet to come from this world-class operation. 





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