giant-steps-wombat-creek-chardonnay-2022
Giant-Steps-Wombat-Creek-Chardonnay-2022

Giant Steps Wombat Creek Vineyard Chardonnay 2022

Sale price$74.95
Yarra Valley, Victoria, Australia

Style: White Wine

Variety: Chardonnay

Closure: Screwcap

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Giant Steps Wombat Creek Vineyard Chardonnay 2022

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, usually ready in 2-4 days

Burke Road
Camberwell VIC 3124
Australia

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Producer: Giant Steps

Country: Australia

Region: Yarra Valley

Vintage: 2022

Critic Score: 95

Alcohol: 12.5%

Size: 750 ml

Drink by: 2035


This could be anything in a few years. Anything, I tell you. But it needs some time to add flesh - Campbell Mattinson

"In true Giant Steps style, the 2022 Single Vineyard release walks the line with swagger and palpable energy. Mel Chester hits it out of the park."  Shanteh Wale

Giant Steps is recognized as a global benchmark for cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The winery was established in 1998, one year after founder Phil Sexton arrived in the Yarra Valley in search of ideal sites to produce Chardonnay and Pinot Noir of purity and finesse. The Giant Steps Single Vineyard range is produced from the most site-expressive fruit off the best vineyards in great years. 

"Youthful and lively in the glass. Complex aromas of grapefruit, melon skin, mineral and just-ripe stone fruit, teaming nicely with a mealy nuttiness. Focused and precise on the palate. Up front, there's a core of citrus and nectarine at play, then a swift punch of minerally acidity kicks in and keeps all taut and fine. Plenty of texture and lovely mouth-feel. A very complete wine."  Aaron Brasher

The Wombat creek Vineyard is located at Gladysdale in the upper Yarra Valley. It was planted in 1988 with the intention of producing base wine for sparkling production but over the years has been gradually transitioned to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for table wine. At 410 metres, is the highest altitude vineyard in the Yarra Valley, making it an ideal location for the production of extreme cool climate wines. The underlying red, ferrous based volcanic soil and rock produce a distinctively soft yet long and firm palate that contrasts with the finer palates seen from the nearby Applejack Vineyard (basalt based volcanic). The 16 hectare Wombat Creek Vineyard, owned by Hand Picked Wines, is located on a north-east-facing slope.

"I10V1 clone. 100% hand picked - very small bunches. Whole bunch pressed, juice transferred to barrel by gravity with no settling. Fermentation in 500L French puncheons, some of which went through malolactic fermentation. Bâtonnage monthly. Maturation for 10 months in new and used French oak puncheons – 15% new, 85% older, Mercurey, Taransaud and Dargaud & Jaeglé."  Giant Steps

Expert reviews

"Youthful and lively in the glass. Complex aromas of grapefruit, melon skin, mineral and just-ripe stone fruit, teaming nicely with a mealy nuttiness. Focused and precise on the palate. Up front, there's a core of citrus and nectarine at play, then a swift punch of minerally acidity kicks in and keeps all taut and fine. Plenty of texture and lovely mouth-feel. A very complete wine. Drink: 2023-2033."  Aaron Brasher, The Real Review - 95 points

"Vines here are now 40 years old, which is pretty remarkable in Yarra Valley terms. It’s the highest, coolest and most southerly of the single vineyard chardonnay sites. Custard powder, florals, wild on the nose but then cool on the palate. They make four barrels of this; two of the four are allowed to go through malo. You wouldn’t know. There’s a creaminess here but there’s cut, there’s savouriness, there are green herb and grapefruit notes and there’s smoke. This could be anything in a few years. Anything, I tell you. But it needs some time to add flesh. Drink: 2026-2030+."  Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front – 94+ points

"From the marginal Wombat Creek vineyard planted at around 400m elevation in the early 1980s. Whole-bunch pressed to French puncheons (25% new), one-third mlf. Aromas of yellow grapefruit, gently poached apples, white peach and a little yuzu. With its mouth-watering acidity, this the most tightly wound of the four Giant Steps chardonnays in 2022. Finishes chalky and long, but it needs another six to 12 months to fill out a little. Drink by 2027."  Philip Rich, Halliday Wine Companion - 94 points 

"Discreet and a little more subdued than its siblings. The highest vineyard in the Yarra. Despite being gently mid-weighted with lower alcohol, this feels softer and looser at the seams, while still typically intense. Bitter almond, lemon zest, nectarine and pistachio accents roll across a skein of tangerine freshness and cinnamon oak. Oatmeal lees at the core. The finish is exceptionally long and effusive of energy. Drinkable now, but best from 2025."  Ned Goodwin MW, JamesSuckling.com - 94 points 

Wombat creek vineyard

Giant steps Wombat Creek VineyardWombat Creek Vineyard  (Upper Yarra Valley)

Wombat Creek Vineyard is the highest altitude vineyard in the Yarra Valley, making it an ideal location for the production of extreme cool-climate wines. A light covering of snow is not uncommon in winter, when the vines are dormant, but the steep slopes allow frost to drain away and protect the tender shoots from freezing temperatures in spring.

The vineyard was originally planted in 1988 with the intention of producing base wine for sparkling production but over the years has transitioned to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for table wine. The underlying ferrous (red) based volcanic soil and rock produce a distinctively soft yet long and firm palate, that contrasts with the finer palates seen from the nearby Applejack Vineyard (basalt based volcanic). This vineyard produces wonderfully exotic Pinot Noir, with a savoury and spicey side.

From the crest of the highest hill at Wombat Creek, steep slopes of vines stretch to the north. At the bottom of the vineyard there is a spring-fed pond covered in water lilies; this is the source of Wombat Creek, which trickles through the hills, joining Hoddles Creek a few kilometres to the north-west and ultimately emptying into the meandering Yarra River. To the north, looking over dense Mountain Ash forest and folds of green hills dotted with wombat holes, the blue horizon is dominated by the saddleback ridge of Mt Donna Buang. The surrounding forest, fern gullies and creeks are home to platypus, lyrebirds, kangaroos, wallabies and, of course, wombats.

Location: Gladysdale                
Elevation: 410 metres          
Aspect: North-east facing
Size: 16 hectares                    
Planted: 1988                       
Soil Type: Red clay loam
Chardonnay ClonesI10V1     
Pinot Noir Clones: MV6

 

Gint steps Vineyard Map

About the winery

Giant Steps Yarra Valley Range In 1997 Phil Sexton arrived in the Yarra Valley in search of ideal sites to produce Chardonnay and Pinot Noir of purity and finesse. He was looking for sites with altitude, aged soils, slopes of exposure, regular rainfall and cool to cold nighttime temperatures and a gentle breeze off the protecting mountain ranges. The Giant Steps winery was established one year later in 1998.

The focus is on the production of high-quality, single-vineyard wines. The Giant Steps Single Vineyard range is produced from the most site-expressive fruit off the best vineyards in great years. Each single vineyard wine tells a story about the vineyard, vintage and variety. Production of these wines is very limited with some vineyards producing as little as 200 cases.

The single vineyards comprise the Sexton Vineyard in the Lower Yarra and the Applejack Vineyard in the Upper Yarra (both owned by Giant Steps), the Tarraford Vineyard in the Lower Yarra under long-term lease, the Primavera Vineyard in the Upper Yarra under long-term supervised contract and the Wombat Creek Vineyard owned by Hand Picked Wines. In addition, Giant Steps produce a Yarra Valley range of wines made from handpicked fruit from their estate vineyards. They are highly expressive wines, true to the regional characteristics of the Yarra Valley. 

The Giant Steps wines have received global acclaim and are now recognized as a global benchmark for cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Since 2003 Giant Steps wines have been awarded 34 trophies and over 100 gold medals at major international and domestic wine shows and has been named one of the Top 100 Wineries in the World by US Wine & Spirits Magazine for each of the last six years.

Giant Step's success is due in no small part to Steve Flamsteed, Chief Winemaker since 2003. Steve had previously worked for Leeuwin Estate (1999 – 2002) and the Hardy Wine Company at their Yarra Burn Winery in the Yarra Valley (2002 – 2003). Steve was named Gourmet Traveller Wine 'Winemaker of the Year' in 2016. "Steve Flamsteed is a man of many talents with a finely tuned palate, an instinctive flair for winemaking and fastidious attention to detail. This shows particularly in the stunning single-vineyard chardonnays and pinots of Giant Steps: distinctive wines that reflect their sites and glow with impeccable finesse."  Peter Forrestal, chairman of judges, Gourmet Traveller Wine Winemaker of the Year

Melanie Chester joined Giant Steps as Head of Winemaking and Viticulture in 2021. She came to Giant Steps from Sutton Grange Winery in Central Victoria, where she was Head Winemaker. In 2014, Melanie became the youngest ever scholar selected for The Len Evans Tutorial. In 2015, she was named Young Winemaker of the Year by Gourmet Traveller Wine magazine, and in 2018, Melanie was recognized by Young Gun of Wine as the People's Choice award winner for favourite winemaker.

Giant Steps was acquired by the Jackson Family in 2020. The Jackson Family own a vast stable of wineries in California (Napa Valley, Sonoma County, Mendocino County, Monterey County, Santa Barbara and Oregon), Australia (Yarra Valley and McLaren Vale), Chile, France, Italy and South Africa.

Wine region map of Victoria

Victoria

Victoria is home to more than 800 wineries across 21 wine regions. The regions are Alpine Valley, Beechworth, Bendigo, Geelong, Gippsland, Glenrowan, Goulburn Valley, Grampians, Heathcote, Henty, King Valley, Macedon Ranges, Mornington Peninsula, Murray Darling, Pyrenees, Rutherglen, Strathbogie Ranges, Sunbury, Swan Hill, Upper Goulburn and Yarra Valley.

Victoria's first vines were planted at Yering in the Yarra Valley in 1838. By 1868 over 3,000 acres had been planted in Victoria, establishing Victoria as the premier wine State of the day. Today, the original vineyards planted at Best's Wines are among the oldest and rarest pre-phylloxera plantings in the world.

Victoria's climate varies from hot and dry in the north to cool in the south and each wine region specialises in different varietals. For example, Rutherglen in the north is famous for its opulent Muscats and Topaque and bold reds, while the many cooler climate regions near Melbourne produce world class Chardonnay and pinot Noir. Victoria is truly a wine lover's playground.