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2021 Vat 47 Chardonnay


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The five-hectare Short Flat Vineyard is located directly north of the driveway of the Tyrrell’s Pokolbin Estate ‘Ashmans’ at an elevation of about 110 metres. The vineyard is a mosaic of vine ages, with the oldest blocks of Chardonnay dating back to 1968, while the youngest vines were planted in 2001. The Semillon is planted in the middle of the vineyard, where the soils are quite uniform sandy loams, while the Chardonnay is planted more sporadically in sites where the soils best suit the variety. Fruit from the Chardonnay grapes go into our Short Flat ‘Old Vines’ Chardonnay and flagship Vat 47 Chardonnay. The Short Flat Vineyard also has Shiraz and Pinot Noir varieties planted on the site.

The autumn and winter months of 2020 saw the worst drought in a generation be broken with substantial rainfall, we led into an outstanding growing season for the 2021 vintage. A cool summer then gave us even, stress-free ripening with some heat around Australia Day that was perfectly timed at the final stages of ripening. With an early budburst and later than normal harvesting, the fruit had a longer than normal hang time, which meant that all of the fruit had wonderful flavours balanced by a high natural acidity. Over the last ten days of January, all of the fruit was handpicked before immediately being basket-pressed. The juice was then cold settled for two days before being racked to another stainless-steel tank to begin fermentation. The fermenting juice was then transferred to French oak barriques to complete fermentation and maturation before bottling in early November.

The 2021 vintage marks the 50th release of Vat 47, Australia’s first Chardonnay. Vibrant green colour, the nose is delicate and perfectly balanced with citrus and white stone fruit with a hint of oak only that sits in the background. The palate is medium bodied and shows sweet Chardonnay fruit that is balanced by textural elements derived from the solids ferment and extended time on yeast lees. The purity, intensity, and length of fruit is what sets this vintage apart from others in recent times.

Alcohol – 13.5%
Cellaring – 5-10 years


96 Points | Ned Goodwin MW, Wine Companion

"Grown entirely on the Short Flat vineyard, planted in 1968. Fermentation kicked off in tank and finished in barrel, assuaging the teeming fruit of the region while imparting tension and verve. This stands aloft. Regal in a Hunter sense, without any forfeit of the regional signature of tangy stone fruits and white-fig riffs. Nougat and cashew, pinioned amidst a steelier framework. This drives long. Thoroughly impressive." (May 2022)

96 Points | Huon Hooke, The Real Review

"Light-medium bright yellow with a multi-layered bouquet, fruit driving it—grapefruit, lemon, crème patissière, oatmeal biscuit and nougat—while the palate displays superior fruit concentration and drive, powering through to a very long finish which is balanced and appetising, harmonious and satisfying. Very smart chardonnay that will also age well." (Jul 2023)

94+ Points | Erin Larkin, The Wine Advocate

"Tightly wound and showing the cool balance of the 2021 vintage to great ehect, this has curried mango, white peach, saltbush and brine mingling on the nose, while the palate gives way to a glassy polish and juicy acid line in the mouth. It's a super impressive wine, all the more so given I recently tasted a 2013, which seemed to have not aged a day. Not one single day. Timeless. A conservative score with a "plus," knowing there is much room to move (upward)." (Dec 2022)

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