95 Points - Gary Walsh
Salo is the project of Dave Mackintosh and Steve Flamsteed; a couple of Australia's most highly credentialed winemakers. Flamsteed is currently a winemaker at Giant Steps in the Yarra Valley and was a previous recipient of Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine's 'Winemaker of The Year.
The newly released 2019 Salo Chardonnay represents the 12th vintage of what has become one of the Yarra Valleys finest and most-demanded Chardonnay. This is another beautifully complex cool-climate Chardonnay with crisp acidity, pristine fruit flavours and impeccable structure derived from some talented winemaking.
"95 Points. Salo always tastes like Salo, which is as it should be, though vintages obviously shape the outcome. This is kind of thick and fleshy but with a firm core of enlivening acidity. It tastes of pie apple with a savoury edge of roast chicken and toasted hazelnuts, ripe lime acidity, fine chalk dust texture, and again that almost creamy oatmeal and an umami sake thing on a long and juicy citrus finish of precision and grip. Very excellent. Tasted: Sep20 13% alc. Screwcap Drink: 2020 - 2024+" - Gary Walsh, The Wine Front.
"The 2019 growing season had many challenges: a warm, wet Spring; a very warm and dry December / early January pushing fast growth and ripening; and a severe lack of pickers were among just a few. But, on reflection, it feels like luck was on our side… A cool cycle in late January / early February, coupled with good crop levels and a nice big green canopy seemed to save us, as ripening stalled and classic Yarra flavours were retained. At the end of February we saw another major heat spike that made the forests surrounding the Yarra a tinderbox. Bush fires seemed inevitable and on the 1st of March a large fire developed in the hills to the south. Fortunately, the day before, we had all hands on deck to whip the fruit off in perfect condition. Our winemaking hasn’t changed a great deal in the last ten years. This is testament to the Yarra Valley’s ability to produce top quality Chardonnay even in the most challenging of years. We just let the wine flow to it’s end destination with a few tweaks here and there. The Hand Picked fruit was chilled in the cold room overnight and then whole bunch pressed to a small tank high in the winery. The tank is then rummaged and run to 500 Litre (all second use) Puncheons by gravity with full juice solids. Wild fermentation finished in late April and the wine was lightly sulphured a few months later. No stirring, unfined and unfiltered. Even with all its challenges 2019 sits firmly in the top 5 list of vintages since 2008."- Salo Wines.
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