2008 Hickinbotham Chardonnay with Aligoté

A point of difference here with the vast majority of Aussie Chards. At present, Hickinbotham of Dromana is the only grower in Oz of the much-maligned Southern Burgundian white grape variety Aligoté, which the winery has championed since the late 1980s. Around fifteen percent oomphs the blend up with body and the variety's hallmark dry natural acid.

DNA profiling has established Aligoté to have a parentage of Pinot Noir and that ancient ever-fecund mother grape, Gouais Blanc. Behind Chardonnay, it ranks second in terms of hectares planted in Burgundy and is a variety grown extensively in the ex-Soviet bloc countries of Eastern Europe. As a variety tolerating cooler growing conditions, it's difficult to understand why there isn't more of the stuff here in regions such as the Hilltops or the Granite Belt.

Light- to mid-gold colours from the glass. There are peach, quince, struck match, citrus and vanilla aromas. 
Concentrated fruit flavours of peach, melon and tart apple on the palate with buttery, nutty nuances from the French oak. The blend has a dry, crisp texture, dusty tannins and a distinctive flinty acid backbone driving through the palate to a long, creamy finish. Medium-bodied with a good balance of fruit and acidity. 

From Hickinbotham's Reserve wines range, this is a fascinating take on the standard Mornington Peninsula Chardonnay, in fact any Chardonnay actually. Yes, I'd enjoy a glass or two more of this thank you.  

Source: Sample. ABV: 13.5%. Closure: Screw Cap. Price: $68.00. Rating: 92 Points. 

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