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First rate sites and viticulture - a pinnacle producer of Victoria

Formerly Greenstone of Heathcote, Greenstone Vineyards began in 2003 as a 40 hectare property (20 Ha under vine) near the town of Heathcote in central Victoria.  Planted principally to Shiraz and Sangiovese, this vineyard is unique in several ways, close planted to reduce individual vine yield, and planted (atypically for the region) east-west, providing shade for fruit and reducing disease pressure due to exposure to cleansing breezes. It is here the name Greenstone is derived, due to the copper infused basalt Cambrian soils of Heathcote. 

A change of ownership in 2015 saw the acquisition and addition of a winery and vineyards in the Yarra Valley, the former site of Sticks/Yarra Ridge.  This has provided a picturesque cellar door facility close to Melbourne, as well as plantings of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and more.  Production across the two sites is deceptively small, with the wines genuinely hand made and quality paramount.

From the get-go a first rate producer, the wine styles are across the board sophisticated, complex, and for want of a better descriptor, grown up – think fruit concentration with purity, texture, refinement and drive.  Philosophy has always been to express well grown fruit from excellent sites, and with a broadening offering of wines , the future looks very bright for Greenstone.


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GREENSTONE YARRA VALLEY SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016

Barrel fermented in French oak hogsheads, and aged 8 months on lees, this wine is bright and lively, both visually and aromatically. A warm fermentation temperature has provided a savory undertone while the intensity and sweetness of the fruit shines. Zesty citrus lemon and lime fruits cut the cooler guava and green melon tropical fruits that fill the palate. Custard and chewy textural wood elements provide further layers of complexity. This wine while drinking well in its youth will provide further enjoyment in 3 or 4 years.

 

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GREENSTONE YARRA VALLEY CHARDONNAY 2016

Grown in sandy clay/loam soil, fermented in barrel and rested for 11 months on lees prior to bottling.  Clear and pristine yellow straw with green highlights in the glass. A balance of crunchy fresh fruits and riper tropical fruits lift with notes of struck match, toast and baked pastries. Flavours of grapefruit, nectarine and cashew are rich and full through the palate. Lees contact has provided a creamy element through the wine. The natural fruit and winemaking influences show as a restrained and balanced example of Yarra Valley Chardonnay.

 

GREENSTONE YARRA VALLEY PINOT GRIGIO 2017

Sourced from a single block in Seville East in Upper Yarra, this wine is fermented wild and raised in stainless steel for freshness.

Light gold colour with a green tinge. A refreshing aromatic profile of soft white florals, pear, grapefruit pith, and creamy notes. A hint of lychee also pops into the mix. The palate has a flinty element which supports fruit flavours of pear, nectarine and orange cake. The wine displays a good balance of savoury and textural elements with a clean dry finish.

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GREENSTONE HEATHCOTE rosé 2016

63% Shiraz, 35% Sangiovese, 2% Colorino

Made via saignée method, with the Sangiovese component bled and fermented in seasoned French oak.  All juice wild fermented, then blended and rested in stainless before bottling.

Showing a darker rose to red colour, with an ash grey coloured hue, this wine is vibrant and youthful. Aromatics of fresh strawberry fruit and rosewater, notes of cumquat and red apples are underlying but not hidden. These vibrant aromatics carry from the nose to the palate, which displays a tight line while being sweet frui

ted, juicy and rounded, arousing your taste buds.  A firmness and texture through the length of the wine, ensures persistence  and enjoyment.

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GREENSTONE YARRA VALLEY PINOT NOIR 2017

From 1983 plantings, a complete and multi-layered Pinot, with whole bunch components and careful oak selections.  Vibrant in its youth, with deep maroon and purples shining through. A fine example of Pinot Noir showing black cherry, earthy truffle and all-spice. The ripeness of this Pinot shows a slightly herbal edge while having a lovely sweetness of ripe cherry and plums. A velvety tannin structure holds a firmness through the length of the wine.  Spice, coffee and an appealing charry character round out this complex wine.

 

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GREENSTONE estate HEATHCOTE SANGIOVESE 2014

A reference point for Australian Sangiovese. Fully destemmed, this wine starts with a cold soak and is allowed to ferment naturally.  Sees around 16 months in French oak prior to bottling.

"Grown on a close-planted vineyard at Heathcote. It’s well worth tracking this wine down.
Sangiovese of presence. It’s not particularly weighty but it makes itself known; the palate carries an air of authority. Coffeed oak, black cherries, herbs and spiced, and lots of tannin-strewn carry through the finish. Both leathery and refreshing at once. Persistence, real persistence. Modern and traditional at the same time. Really impressive. Price is excellent too."
  93 points, Campbell Mattinson, www.winefront.com.au

 

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GREENSTONE YARRA VALLEY CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015

Dark red with a maroon coloured hue, dense and shiny.

Blackberry, blackberry and some more blackberries! Red currants and blueberry also present, with notes of cassis (black currant liqueur), dried

summer leaves, and hints of coffee and smoked meat.

The densely packed aromatics move through into the palate. The fruit shows fresh and crisp, and its sweetness is complemented by fine fruit tannins and oak phenolics. These sit comfortably under the fruit, pedestalling it, and carrying through the length of the palate. A dark richness is enveloping, yet remains elegant and refined.

Medium bodied, this wine can be enjoyed for many years into the future.

 

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GREENSTONE estate HEATHCOTE SHIRAZ 2015

Considered and precise growing and winemaking comes to the fore here, with four individual Shiraz clones vinified separately. New and seasoned French oak is used, with varying barrel sizes, and comprehensive blending trials to ensure harmony and elegance.

"The value here is high. The fruit is ripe and powerful, it has ample character, and while oak has been liberally applied it’s sinking slowly into the wine, and the fruit behind is good. I reckon we’re onto a good thing here. Blackberry, blueberry, toast, chocolate and peppercorn flavours. A suede-like aspect, leathery, creamy. It’s a wine for lovers of ripe, generously proportioned Australian shiraz, no doubt, and for those who too are oak tolerant. But the package as a whole is impressive."
93 points, Campbell Mattinson, www.winefront.com.au

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greenstone methode traditionnelle sparkling 2012

53% Pinot Noir and 47% Chardonnay, fermented separately with a very small portion in old French hogsheads to provide complexity.  Aged on lees in tank and oak until tirage, then a further 48 months in bottle until disgorgement in November 2016.  A complex palate of Granny Smith apples, oyster shell, lemon tart and citrus, rounded out with breadiness, and a creamy and elegant texture with a fine bubble.

Trophy winner Best Sparkling, Victorian Wine Show November 2017

 

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greenstone cordon cut viognier 2017 375ml

A dessert/late harvest style, achieved by cutting the cordons of the vines as the fruit reaches the desired ripeness.  This dehydrates the grapes increasing sugar and acid levels, as well as encouraging a little botrytis. The exotic flavours of Viognier work fantastically for this style.

Vibrant in the glass. A glossy pale gold colour with a lime hue. Aromas of spring blossom, cumquat, musk, candied orange and lime all abound. The palate is intense with orange citrus fruits, stringy bark honey, and a touch of noble rot (Botrytis) all flowing the wine length. A harmonious balance between the acid and sugar ensures the finish of this wine is clean and fresh, leaving the taste buds wanting more.

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greenstone RESERVE SHIRAZ HEATHCOTE 2012

The nose displays refined ripe dark plum and dark cherry top notes followed by some liquorice, leather, subtle vanillin cedar and a light meatiness. Pepper and Graphite-like edge.

Medium bodied the palate has dark plummy flavours alongside a lick of liquorice, cedary vanilla and spice. Elegant soft mouthfeel with very fine grained chocolatey and velvet like tannins. Aftertaste of dark plum, subtle liquorice, cedar and spice, and a glimmering slate-like spark on the finish.

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greenstone RESERVE SANGIOVESE HEATHCOTE 2013

A pinnacle example of Australian Sangiovese.  Fine and savoury and of light cherry colour, the nose delivers rain on bitumen, dark plum, fig, and tea leaf.  The palate drops red cherry, tobacco, suggestions of dried flowers and a hint of aniseed, burnt toffee and silky dark chocolate. A savoury finish of Italian dried herbs, over long fine and elegant tannin.

”This is serious stuff: layer upon layer of black cherry and bitter chocolate; it has a savoury profundity that takes you to the greatest names in Tuscany.”  97 points, James Halliday