Vineyard: The By Farr chardonnay comes from the same site as the Sangreal pinot noir—composed of red soil over limestone—and was planted in 1994. The limestone of this site is not exposed on the surface as at other sites. The limestone starts 20 to 30cm below the surface, to the depths of the root zone of the vines. It is a very exposed north-facing slope. The clones used for the chardonnay are a mixture of Dijon clones and Penfolds 58.
Vinification: The fruit is hand-picked then whole-bunch pressed in the winery. All the solids are collected and chilled before being put to barrel, which are 30 per cent new French oak. A natural fermentation will occur at cool temperatures over the next one to two months, and then a small amount of stirring helps start malolactic fermentation. The wine is then racked, fined and lightly filtered before bottling 11 months after picking. A very mineral site for chardonnay.
Tasting Note: ‘We’re going to stick with the title By Farr Chardonnay if it’s the last thing we do.
No matter what you call it, this is a beautiful wine. It covers the bases of freshness, flavour, texture and length and then adds the indefinable. If you feel in desperate need of one long lazy afternoon then this hands it to you. It’s stone fruity and grapefruit-edged and flinty and none of those things. Its cedarwood notes are painted on the bare skin of chardonnay. Trust. From the first sip it establishes trust.Drink 2020-2028’ 96 Points, Campbell Mattinson, Wine Front