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Shaw & Smith Adelaide Hills M3 Chardonnay 2017 £29.95
SHAW & SMITH ADELAIDE HILLS M3 CHARDONNAY
Established in 1989 by Martin Shaw and Michael Hill Smith MW, Shaw + Smith's aim is to make contemporary, high quality wines that stand among the best of their type in Australia. The wines are made exclusively from fruit grown in the Adelaide Hills, one of Australia's coolest and most exciting regions. Shaw + Smith specialise in grape varieties suited to cooler climates, such as Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay, and also make outstanding wines from Shiraz and Pinot Noir.
Fruit was predominantly sourced from the Shaw + Smith vineyard at Lenswood, which was planted in 1999 and purchased by Martin and Michael in 2012. Undulating with east and west facing aspects at 455 - 500 metres above sea level, the soils are brown loams over clay with broken shale on the ridges. Low yields were achieved by aggressive pruning and pre-harvest bunch thinning. All fruit was hand picked to avoid any fruit damage.
There was record rainfall throughout the growing season, but importantly, it reduced to average in November during flowering and was dry during March, the later part of ripening. Record low temperatures were also recorded resulting in a late, very cool vintage. Flavours are intense and the natural acidity is striking.
The grapes were chilled overnight, whole bunch pressed, and then fermented in new and used French oak (one third of which was new). The wine was matured for nine months in oak with some lees stirring, then two months in tank on lees prior to b
Low yields, long ripening and very cool weather made 2017 a standout year for Chardonnay. This vintage has great presence, showing white flowers and lemon blossom. Typically, the 'M3' shows citrus and nectarine notes. Aiming for elegance, restraint and the ability to age, acid is bright and there’s generosity of flavour.
Straw and hay aromas, a hint of rubber and smoke, the palate elegantly-crafted and very savoury, dry and taut. The artifact dominates the fruit somewhat and it all finishes a little short. What's there is very good.
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