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The lion’s share of the fruit for the 2022 Rocket Chardonnay comes from the family’s recently acquired Lenswood Vineyard. Initially planted in 1989, this beautiful site sits at a lofty 500 metres elevation and is home to some of the oldest vines in the Lenswood area. With lineage and continuity of style in mind, alongside the 65% Lenswood component, 35% of the blend is sourced from one of the traditional, high-sited Rocket sources in Piccadilly Valley. The Lenswood site is home to a tapestry of clones but it was the clone 76 vines planted in 2000 and located in the western forest block that were chosen for the 2022 Rocket. In terms of style, Downer tells us the Lenswood site brings grace, purity and openness to the wine, providing a perfect juxtaposition to the racier expression of the Piccadilly fruit.
Whole bunch pressed, the juice was settled for less than 24 hours and rough racked to a mixture of demi-muids, puncheons and tight-grained low-toast French barriques (50% new) for nine months. The wine went through full malo. The parcels were then assembled to tank to rest for a few months before bottling in January.
Elevated by the quality and inherent power of the Lenswood fruit, the 2022 is densely aromatic, complex and layered with fresh citrus, wet minerals and a lick of lovely struck-match reduction. The palate is crammed with mouthcoating energy. Layered citrus and grilled nut flavours float on the palate aligned to gracing malo richness, mouthwatering acidity and a friendly tug of phenolic grip. The finish is powerful and super long. It’s a striking, high-octane model, and a world-class Chardonnay.
We respectfully acknowledge the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation, who are the Traditional Owners of the land on which we operate in Melbourne, and pay our respect to their Elders past, present and emerging. We also acknowledge and respect the Traditional Owners of lands across Australia, their Elders, Ancestors, cultures and heritage, and recognise the continuing sovereignties of all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nations.
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