Domaine Chandon Barrel Selection Pinot Meunier 2016
The cool climate of our Green Point Vineyard in the Yarra Valley produces Pinot Meunier fruit of high quality. At Domaine Chandon we capture these pristine varietal characters and ensure our wines express regional integrity, great style and elegant sophistication.
Bright and translucent with ruby and magenta hues. Fresh strawberry and red berry fruit aromas complemented by delicate earth, subtle violet and liquorice characters. Bursting with juicy red fruits, the Pinot Meunier character continues on the generous palate. Gentle acidity and velvety tannins complete the long and refreshing finish.
Pinot Meunier is rare outside of Champagne, and even more so as a still red wine. In 1831, James Busby brought Pinot Meunier cuttings from Champagne to Australia. These are now growing at Best’s in Great Western, Main Ridge Estate on the Mornington Peninsula and at our Green Point vineyard here in Coldstream. Our Whitlands Vineyard, close to the King Valley, also has Pinot Meunier cuttings from Main Ridge Estate. While Pinot Meunier grapes are traditionally grown here for our sparkling wines, the option to make a small parcel of a still red wine style arose and the winemaking team jumped at the opportunity. Our Green Point vineyard has a great clone of Pinot Meunier, supported by rich soils and favourable row orientation and canopy structure. Our specific aim for the making of this Pinot Meunier was to retain soft, red berry fruit flavours as well as savoury, supple tannins and balanced acidity.
The vines chosen for Domaine Chandon Barrel Selection Pinot Meunier were carefully monitored by the winemakers throughout the ripening period to determine the exact timing of the harvest. That moment arrived when the fruit was expressing vibrant and soft cherry flavours and a nice balance between sugar and acidity. Once the small parcel of hand-picked grapes arrived in the winery they were chilled overnight and then de-stemmed into a 2.5 tonne bin for fermentation. The grapes were hand-plunged daily to extract a balance of colour, flavour and tannin components. Once fermentation was complete, the wine was then pressed and transferred to French oak barrels for malolactic fermentation. The wine was aged in oak where it was topped, regularly monitored and assessed for 10 months before bottling.
Food Pairing Notes
Mushroom and pecorino bruschetta or pulled pork and coleslaw sliders.
Good winter and early spring rains provided perfect conditions for strong shoot and leaf growth. Warm spring conditions led to an early budburst followed by early flowering. Clear and dry summer weather prevailed, with some brief rain in January, just enough to slow the ripening and carry the soil moisture through to harvest. Warm days through February without extreme heat events ensured full ripening of mature grapes.