Region: Adelaide Hills, SA
First Glance: Chalky, detailed, energetic
Gentle Folk is an exciting young project by marine biologist come winemaker, Gareth Belton, based in the Adelaide Hills. Here Gareth and his small family farm small plots of cool climate varieties, whilst also buying in fruit from like-minded growers in regions further afield. The wines are sympathetically Lo-Fi, bordering on natural, but without entering into the plane of gritty funkiness because of some strictly kept ideology. As such, the vineyards are farmed biodynamically and the wines see no additions except a bare minimum of sulphites just prior to bottling.
The Village Chardonnay is a blend of 4 sites with differing altitudes and exposures. planted to a variety of clones. A regional expression of Chardonnay in the hills, seen through the Belton lens, if you will. 100% whole cluster pressed and settled in tank overnight. Racked to a mixture of French and Austrian barriques, puncheons and foudre for nine months, 10% new.
94 points, Mike Bennie, The Wine Front
Chardonnay hand-rasied by Gareth Belton et al in the Adelaide Hills.
Supple, flowing, attractive chardonnay. Lots of detail, chalky pucker, appley acidity, some nutty nougat licks and a bit of flinty minerally character in the mix. Drives with purpose, feels serious but delicious, great persistence, savouriness to the fore. Wonderful wine. Dine out on it.