2016 Swan Valley Wines Chenin blanc sec – ‘Nature’
This wine is the 17th Vintage of this wine since 1999. The wine is always vinified from a two-acre block of vines in front of the winemaker’s residence, on some of the oldest soils on earth: Loton and Oakover series gravelly, sandy loams over massive orange coloured clay. The soil type is broadly lateritic, but also contains a mixture of colluvial and alluvial materials. This block is also the stoniest section of the Estate vineyard, with a high proportion of gravel, interspersed with pebbles and cobbles of quartz and sandstones.
The vines themselves were planted in the 1940s, making them some of the oldest of their type in Australia. Dry-grown and trained low for water efficiency, the vines are now bush pruned as the ancient trellises have decayed over the years. The combination of stony soils and proximity of the fruiting zone to the ground, provides a unique microclimate in the Australian context.
2016 was a compressed vintage, following a relatively dry winter / spring. This resulted in very low yields and the earliest vintage in our records. Yields were extremely low, resulting in ripe, concentrated fruit.
No additions have been made to this wine at any stage, to allow full expression of this unique terroir. Unlike most natural white wines that rely on skin-contact for protection, this wine was whole bunch pressed and barrel fermented in seasoned french oak. After a natural malolactic fermentation was allowed to progress, the lees were resuspended and the wine transferred to stainless steel for a long maturation. After 14 months, the wine was determined to be stable and was hand bottled under CO2 cover.
6 bottle minimum