Wine Review: Site over science in Giant Steps’ ‘terrific’ Chardonnay

I’ve featured the work of Steve Flamsteed from Yarra Valley winery Giant Steps before, and for good reason.

Giant Steps’ wines are consistently excellent and seem to just get better every time I get a look at them. These are wines of site over science.

The aim is simple: to gently guide the wine to bottle so the unique characters of the vineyard manifests in your glass. Giant Steps are about the nuance of place; that wonderful French concept of terroir.

The site in question is the Wombat Creek vineyard in Gladysdale, planted in 1988 in red, volcanic/ferrous soils at 420 metres, the highest in the Yarra Valley. Besides the site, the prevailing conditions over the growing season, and, at harvest, have a major impact on the finished wine. Last year, the Yarra Valley experienced a textbook cool-climate year, and this shows as great detail, clarity and sense of latent power and vitality are apparent.

The 2017 Wombat Creek Chardonnay is comfortable in its own skin; beautifully balanced with the purest of fruit, light undertones of oatmeal, spice and just a hint of flinty, struck-match complexity. Pitch-perfect tension between fruit and acidity and a lingering finish redolent with citrus, white peach, spice, grilled nuts and oatmeal. Terrific drinking.

GIANT STEPS 2017 Wombat Creek Vineyard Chardonnay

giantstepswine.com.au

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