Winery: Ten Minutes by Tractor
Region: Mornington Peninsula - Victoria
Winemaker: Richard McIntyre, Jeremy Magyar & Martin Spedding
Varietal(s): 100% Chardonnay
The Wallis vineyard typically affords the most delicate expression of Chardonnay in the Ten Minutes by Tractor portfolio, so in a cool year like 2011, the question becomes: how far will growing conditions push the site’s natural style? The answer is: excitingly far. The 2011 Wallis retains all the finesse for which this label is known, but the vintage’s extraordinary nature has produced an almost archetypal wine. The aroma presents a collection of notes primarily in the upper registers. Foremost amongst them is a sense of minerality, part powder and part perfume, that recalls fine fragrance. This is a first spray of your favourite summer eau de toilette, invigorating and complex, so precisely layered it seems designed that way. Alongside, there’s the smell of white flowers, delicate spice and, finally, hits of the citrus fruit that finds its full expression on the palate.
After a decade of warm and dry conditions the 2011 vintage broke the drought with over 600 mm of rain during the growing season versus an average of 350mm, the cool and wet conditions resulted in our latest harvest on record (16 April v 2 April average). Yields were reduced but those grapes that were picked were of good quality – great natural acidity and lovely flavours in our Chardonnay with the Pinot Noir benefitting from the long cool ripening (second longest veraison interval, 68 days v 57 day average).
The grapes were hand-harvested through the third week of April, whole bunch pressed and the unsettled juice was transferred to 25% new French oak barriques. Fermentation by indigenous yeasts preceded a partial (45%) malolactic fermentation in spring and regular stirring of lees was carried out over a 9 month barrel maturation. Bottled unfined after filtration.