Welcome to the Victory Point Wines, Summer 2008 newsletter and wine offer.
In this newsletter we will bring you up to date with the 2008 vintage in Margaret River and what has been happening at Victory Point.
On offer to our mailing list clients is the release of the 2007 Chardonnay.
We are again thrilled with the quality of the wine, which is in the same style and maintains the excellent standard achieved with the first two vintages from Victory Point. As most of you will be aware, our previous vintages have both been awarded 94 points by Australia’s pre eminent wine writer, James Halliday. His annual Wine Companion is due for release in August and we are hopeful of at least maintaining this rating.
Due to the increase in labour and material costs we have had to increase the price per bottle, however, to make all our wines more readily accessible, for a limited time, we are offering our wines in cartons of 12 bottles, 6 bottles or 3 bottles, delivered free, within Australia.
PLACE YOUR ORDER FOR THE 2007 VICTORY POINT CHARDONNAY
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2007 VICTORY POINT CHARDONNAY
Viticultural review - 2007
In Margaret River, the overall conditions for the 2007 vintage are considered good for producing very good red and white wines. The warmer than average spring temperatures brought on rapid vine growth and after the extremely late season of 2006, the 2007 vintage was heading for an early harvest. However, the summer months produced moderate temperatures, perfect for ripening. At Victory Point, approximately 10 kilometres north of the Margaret River township, the grapes continued to ripen over February and were hand picked on 22/2/2007 at an average 13.2 Baume.
On delivery to the winery the fruit was pressed in whole bunches and transferred to tank for cold stabilisation. Once stabilised it was racked into barrels for primary fermentation. Once completed the wine is again racked and returned to the barrels where malolactic fermentation took place.
Maturation occurred for 9 months in a mix of new and one year old (20%) French oak barriques- Remond Troncais MTL.
The Victory Point chardonnay vineyard is planted with a combination of the Mendoza clone and the Burgundian clones; 76, 95, 96 & 277. For the 2007 vintage approximately 20% of each clone was used. The wine was bottled with screw cap closures on 28/02/2007.
Keith Mugford continues to oversee the production of the Victory Point Chardonnay and has provided these observations on the new vintage.
Colour: a very youthful medium straw with green tints and the condition is bright.
Nose: the wine shows the key features of the 2007 vintage. First of all there is full fruit ripeness, with aromas of melon and peach and then in the background complexity of passionfruit, honey, cashews, caramel and spice. Then the second guide to the vintage quality is the balance of oak, which sits neatly in the background behind these rich fruit notes.
Palate: This generosity and balance is a also hallmark of the palate, where the wine displays almost plump fruit weight across the middle but it retains lively acidity, with a crispness that gives a linearity and freshness. The length is excellent and the fruit flavours finish with a good combination of charry, spicy oak and some soft tannins at the very end.
Cellaring: At this early stage the great fruit depth makes the wine very enjoyable but there is a structure underneath that will allow it age. Like most good Margaret River Chardonnays, it will build a little more complexity with each year in bottle and by 5 years of old should have developed the beginnings of its bottle bouquet. However its structure and fruit depth should ensure that it will continue to develop and it should be kept until it is at least 10 years old to see it as the complete, complex wine.
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The 2008 vintage started with exceptional rainfall over the winter months of ’07, making it the wettest winter on record for the Victory Point vineyard (record keeping since 2000).
Our dedicated vineyard team of Bill Darnell and Dave Morgan, completed the pruning work for each variety on schedule, which helps ensure the vines are in the optimal shape for bud burst and fruit production. The wet weather continued into September, thoroughly soaking the vineyard and when Spring hit, the vine growth was prolific. Of course, the weeds also flourished and as we do not use any chemicals for weed control, the mechanical digger was put to use. The boggy conditions tried the patience of our diligent operators, who at one stage managed to bog two tractors and the four wheel drive ute. Luckily we still have the 1973 Land Cruiser on hand for such occasions, and the trusty fishing truck pulled all to dry land!
October brought a hail storm, which was quite isolated in its damage, and luckily avoided Victory Point.
Summer has been patchy with some sudden downpours of rain interspersed with bouts of unusually hot weather, including Christmas and Boxing Days (40 degrees!!). This variation has continued over February with the ripeness levels racing ahead and then stabilizing, due to the cooler weather.
This year is the first year that the chardonnay quantities were sufficient to justify picking and vinifying each of the clones separately. The grapes are hand picked in small batches, ensuring only those in perfect condition and ripeness are included. Picking was carried out from 18th-26th February, with the Burgundian clone 277 ripening first, followed by the mendoza clone and the clones 95,76,and 96. Within the winery we will now begin analysing the blending opportunities of each variety.
The Cabernet sauvignon and red varieties are slowly approaching ripeness. As mentioned, the weather conditions have made predicting picking dates difficult. The cabernet franc and malbec have been the first varieties to ripen in the past and we anticipate they will be in by mid March, followed by the cabernet sauvignon, merlot and petit verdot.
Quantity appears light across the district, which is probably due to the Spring weather.But the quiet expectation is for another good quality Margaret River vintage.
Victory Point –
Centre of learning!!
Since joining Victory Point Vineyard in 2000, our vineyard manager, Bill Darnell, and leading hand David Morgan, have been an exceptional and dedicated team. While they have had expert, hands-on training from Keith Mugford and the Moss Wood team, they also pursued their own viticultural qualifications.
Over 2007 Bill has completed his Bachelor of Science Degree in Viticulture, from Charles Sturt University (NSW) and Dave has been awarded the prize for Student of the Year at the Margaret River TAFE Campus, having completed his Viticultural Certificates 1 & 2.
Not only do they excel in academia, hand manicuring vineyards and creating magnificent, intensely flavoured grapes, this year, between them, they have custom built a coolroom and picking trailer, trained the Cowaramup Under 13 football team to the Grand Final and hold the world record for the sprint around “Sophie’s Block” of vines.
We congratulate them on all of their successes!