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2017 Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay

2017 Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay

'A perfect core of fruit underneath with echos of Corton-Charlemagne. Hard if not impossible to beat.'
98 Points - Angus Hughson

$84.99 Per Bottle

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$84.99
DESCRIPTION
  • 'An Australian Grand Cru'
    Huon Hooke

    Heytesbury Chard, one of Australia's and the world's best examples of this wine. Full Stop. And in 2017 you will find it hard to get any better than this. Made from a selection of the most unique and striking rows of fruit from the Vasse empire, this tightly wound wine will strike you with its complexity and character. Entrenched with grain, meal and almond, you will find the beautiful twists of lemon, peel and honey-dew melon opening up in the glass.

    2017 is where winemakers like Virginia Wilcox thrive. The cooler conditions prevailed, meaning her thoroughly careful and modern take on Margaret River Gin Gin clone Chardonnay has shined right through. While malolactic is encouraged in the wine, it is a dominant feature, and nor is the oak, only used in the perfect ratio to ensure the fruit sucks up the wood character, rather than be dominated by it. While its a little restrained now, this vintage will shine in a few years time.

    Do what you must to get your hands on a bottle of this vintage of Heytesbury, arguably the finest ever release put together by Vasse Felix.

  • WINEMAKER'S NOTES

    Our most unique small vineyard sections where clone, aspect and soil interplay in such a way to ignite stunning varietal and wild yeast characters. A beautiful cool season saw Chardonnay picked three weeks later than the last 10 years, with elegant fruit perfumes, ideal sugar levels and high acidity. Malolactic fermentation was encouraged, though it is not an obvious feature of the wine. Due to the cool conditions, 52% of the fruit was Selectiv machine harvested to extract additional fine flavours from the skins before pressing. After settling for a short time, the cloudy juice was transferred straight to barrel. The remaining balance was hand-harvested, whole-bunch pressed and transferred direct to barrel as unclarified juice. The wine was fermented with only natural yeasts from the vineyard and remained in barrel for nine months with some battonage. The fruit was 100% Gingin clone from Wilyabrup and Wallcliffe. A very restrained vintage has produced a young wine that will blossom with time in bottle.

    Vintage - 2017 was a cooler and later vintage than the previous 10 years; a year of elegant, perhaps slightly lighter bodied wines, though ripe in flavour, vibrant and very perfumed. Higher than average yields in combination with a cooler season contributed to delayed ripening of the fruit and good acid retention. Some timely warmth and sunshine occurred throughout January, although February temperatures remained moderate with some rainfall. With the cooler weather, canopy management and fruit thinning was imperative to mitigate disease pressures and allow for even, persistent ripening. There was a warm start to March to finish the white harvest, followed by the driest April since 1982, finishing the reds beautifully.

    Alcohol - 13.0%
    Oak - French Oak Barrique, 53% new, 47% 1-3 year old


    TASTING NOTES

    Bright, light golden straw. Elegant, fragrant notes of hazelnut, mealy wafer and brioche intertwine with grapefruit, hints of fine lemon pith and honey dew melon. Underlying tones of candlewax, champignon, ginger and fennel also play a part in this complex perfume. A satin light entrance builds to a long, tangy dry finish filled with delicate characters reminiscent of peach custard brioche, hazelnuts and candle wax, supported by fine lemon pith and anise.

  • REVIEWS


    'The best chardonnay yet from Vasse Felix. There is texture and richness but with control and finesse. Layers of flavours, with chalky acidity sustaining the remarkably long finish. Carrying more flesh than some recent vintages but still within the style parameters synonymous with Heytesbury. It's all wild-yeast fermented with about 52 per cent new oak, which has been backed off from recent vintages. A concentrated power-plus wine.'
    98 Points -  Ray Jordan



    'Bright light golden in colour. Superb purity and balance from the get-go. A bright and pristine Margaret River Chardonnay with more of the citrus floral fruits than usual with a touch of nectarine all wrapped up in a blanket of restrained barrel ferment complexity plus superb quality oak well intregrated. Seamless on the palate - excellent fruit concentration and vitality lead to an exceptionally long, almost mineral driven fruit. A perfect core of fruit underneath with echos of Corton-Charlemagne. Hard if not impossible to beat.'

    98 Points - Angus Hughson


    'Tasted alongside the regular label, this wine has the volume turned up and is altogether a richer, weightier and more assertive chardonnay with obvious cellaring potential. A serious thoroughbred with mineral, hazelnut, citrus, apple, peach and brioche flavours, together with a subtle floral character. Very impressive now, more impressive later'
    96 Points - Bob Campbell


    'Tasted alongside the regular label, this wine has the volume turned up and is altogether a richer, weightier and more assertive chardonnay with obvious cellaring potential. A serious thoroughbred with mineral, hazelnut, citrus, apple, peach and brioche flavours, together with a subtle floral character. Very impressive now, more impressive later'
    95 Points - Huon Hooke


    'Elegant and composed, this ageworthy chardonnay has a pithy bouquet of grapefruit, lemon and fresh vanilla oak backed by briny, chalky undertones. It’s long and stylish, with a gentle but fleshy core of vivacious fruit that moves easily along a fine, chalky texture towards a brisk and appropriately taut acidity, finishing with persistent notes of fruit and smoked meats.'

    95 Points - Jeremy Oliver


    'A seamless, effortless poise of the utmost balance that sets Heytesbury apart as one of the shining beacons of New World chardonnay.'
    Tyson Stelzer