2010 OCEAN EIGHT SPARKLING
Tasting Notes & Winemaking
We use top quality Chardonnay grapes from a very cool site that are picked just at the start of the ripening phase. The wine is fermented in used oak barrels before bottling with a little added yeast and sugar.
The patience comes in the length of time we leave the wine in the bottle for the second fermentation and autolysis to have its full effect. Autolysis is a breaking down of the yeast and gives sparkling wine its signature brioche aroma and creamy texture. Non-vintage (NV) Champagne has a minimum bottle aging period of 15 months whilst vintage Champagne must stay in the bottle for at least 3 years. We think that 8 years is just about perfect for this Mornington Peninsula Sparkling.
If it weren’t for the washing and polishing of the bottles, the base of each bottle would have Mike Aylward’s fingerprint on them. This is because Mike riddles the bottles himself, a painstaking operation where he regularly twists the bottles to shake the sediment of dead yeast cells to the neck of the bottle. This sediment is then frozen and removed from the bottle before a small amount of reserve wine and just a little sweetness is added to complete the wine. This is called the ‘dosage’. Our dosage level is similar to that favoured by the great traditional Champagne houses. You can’t really taste the sugar, but it does fill out the mid palate. Great when served as an aperitif prior to the meal.
The top 30cm soil profile is red ferrosols. It is defined by its very high clay content & high levels fertility and water holding capacity. The vineyard is one of the most southerly and coolest on the Mornington Peninsula landmass, allowing the fruit to ripen into Autumn, for perfect balance of ripeness & acidity.
2.0 tonne / acre