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1999 Rosemount Estate Semillon Chardonnay
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- Closure: Cork
Notes sourced from Rosemount Estate.
Pioneered in Australia, Semillon-Chardonnay is a combination of two of our most popular white grape varieties. Semillon has been grown in the Hunter Valley since the beginning of Australia's viticultural history and has long been recognised for producing quality wine. By contrast, (although few would think it now) the Chardonnay grape is a relative newcomer to Australian vineyards, with the first major plantings emerging in the 1960's and 1970's, and its widespread popularity only developing in the 1980's. The combination of both varieties provides a synergy of palate flavours, giving richness and length to the finished wine.
The 1999 vintage is noted for its climatic vagaries, presenting grape growing and harvesting challenges in almost all wine producing regions, with the notable exception of the Upper Hunter Valley, where a trouble-free crop was brought in under dry conditions. Elsewhere, summer drought and late rains focussed grape growers' minds upon issues of vineyard hygiene and harvest timing, A mild autumn relieved the final run-up to picking and at Rosemount good vineyard management practices were reflected in a crop showing bright fruit flavours of considerable quality
The fruit for this wine is sourced from vineyards spread across Australia, with Semillon Hunter Valley as well as components from the Murray River Valley. The Semillon gives lift and freshness to the aroma, whilst the Chardonnay, sourced from McLaren Vale as well as the Hunter and Murray Valleys, gives tropical richness and palate softness.
The Semillon fruit was lightly crushed and chilled prior to gentle pressing. The Chardonnay fruit was held in contact with the skins for 12 hours prior to pressing, thus maximising fruit flavour. Following fermentation at 10-14'C, the varieties were held separately prior to final blending. A proportion of the Chardonnay received two to four months of oak- maturation whilst malo-lactic fermentation was allowed to run through part of both the Semillon and Chardonnay lots, adding depth to their middle palate and finish and providing further options for the final blend.
The 1999 Semillon Chardonnay has an attractive lemon yellow appearance and an aroma of melon and fresh tangerine and rind, set against a creamy underlay of light oak. On the palate the wine is lively and bright with soft, ripe Chardonnay flavours balanced by a finish of lemon and light herbs derived from the Semillon component. The blend works well, finishing crisp but full in the mouth.