With Richard Slater
2019 Oakridge Willowlake Chardonnay
Yarra Valley, Victoria 13.2% RRP $44
After three bargain-priced wine reviews, comes one more expensive, but hugely gratifying. Oakridge makes a plethora of Chardonnays – “864” is their flagship, with amazing success in credible wine shows. Price-wise, this wine lies in the middle. Young and pale; it still has a glowing, healthy hint of green. Fruit power and depth is on display. Grapefruit, orange blossom citrus, hints of flint, and matchstick; the palate revels in white stonefruit, grapefruit and mineral. Vibrant, compelling and completely delicious, this wine will age gracefully for a decade too. It’s stylish, but not underpowered or swamped by winemaker “look at me” indulgence. Travel! Sample at cellar-door – the restaurant is terrific too; not merely the view but the thoughtful and creative menu.
Conclusion: Puts the ABC (anything but Chardonnay) camp back in their box. Modern Australian Chardonnay is a delight- a chicken, ginger and mushroom stir-fry beckons, or white fish in any style. Don’t overchill, this wine will unfurl through your meal.