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Margaret River

Grape Varietals

97 Points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown

2020, Chardonnay

Exclusive agency or direct allocations

Australia’s leading cult wine was created by American biologist Will Berliner, on the wild and isolated southwestern corner of Australia in a biodiversity paradise.

The one-hectare vineyard was planted in 2005, and has never been cultivated nor chemically sprayed. It is close-planted, own-rooted and non-irrigated, and has been farmed using biodynamic principles from inception. The vineyard benefits from the presence of well-drained ironstone gravel soils, and a supremely untainted natural environment within sound of the Indian Ocean.

Speaking of the Cloudburst ethos, owner and vigneron Will says “Our practice of
careful observation begins in the vineyard and continues in the winery. We work with nature and offer only minimal interference in natural processes. The whole farm is an integrated, living system, with its foundation in the soil. It is an exceptionally isolated and pristine place, unmarred in any way. The grapes have nothing standing in the way of their full expression.”

As Phylloxera is not a threat in the region, Cloudburst vines are planted on their own rootstocks, accentuating both the varietal expression and sense of place. Planted with Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and a tiny amount of Malbec, Will hand tends the vines, as well as hand weeds - never using chemicals or machines. The vineyard has never been irrigated, it’s entirely dry grown and is neither cultivated nor tilled. Trellising utilises vertical shoot positioning with a very low cordon. All of the estate work is not only done by hand, but largely by Will alone - embodying artisanal focus, true craftsmanship and the estate’s deserved cult status and reputation.

Cloudburst Chardonnay is hand harvested and sorted in small batches and fermented as microcuvées. Grapes are whole bunch pressed directly into barrel without mixing or settling. Alcoholic and malolactic fermentation occur naturally. Once secondary fermentation is complete, the barrels are minimally sulphured. There is some lees-stirring during fermentation, but not obsessive.

The vintage
A wet winter gave the vines a good start and was followed by a relatively warm spring, ideal for early growth. The summer was hot, and characterized by successive heat waves and very dry conditions. This resulted in smaller bunch sizes with intense concentrated flavours. The dry hot days accelerated ripening and Chardonnay harvest finished quite early.

The tasting notes
2020 CHARDONNAY is a brilliant wine of gr ace, power, and structure.
Marvelously aromatic and deeply evocative, its complex fragrance spills out of the glass with a powerful essence of ripe pear, Meyer lemon, and dazzling citrus blossom tinged with hints of sandalwood incense.
The wine’s superb, perfectly weighted texture thoroughly envelopes the palate with concentrated pear and Meyer lemon, flawlessly entwined with exotic wood spice and river stone. So beautifully assembled, it’s cerebral in its sensuality, intriguing in its complexity, and persists astoundingly long..

Alc : 13.3%
Blend :
• 100% - Chardonnay

5 Available for 750ml
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The Producer

In 2004, Berliner, an American biologist and his wife, Alison Jobson, purchased their land in Margaret River. When the intention to live simply became a decision to plunge headfirst into wine, Berliner adopted biodynamic principles and planted vines in his small vineyard- 0.2 hectares planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, 0.2 hectares to Chardonnay, and ... read more

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