Little Reddie New! Leanganook Chardonnay 2022
Each block was hand-harvested over three picks starting on the 9th of March and concluding on the 21st. The fruit was whole bunch pressed and wild fermented in stainless steel, before being sent to old barrique, puncheon and demi muid where it rested until late summer. The wine was then racked back to tank for a couple of months before bottling on the 1st of March.
Variety - Chardonnay
Country - Australia
Region - Victoria
Sub Region -Leanganook / Faraday
Extra - Screwcap
Year - 2022
Volume - 750ml
Pat Underwood has always been on our radar... Firstly as that incredibly jovial sommelier at Melbourne’s City Wine Shop (THE guy to ask what one should drink), and now as the still-incredibly-jovial winemaker of Little Reddie. Pat runs his negociant winemaking project out of Colbinabbin and Malmsbury, Victoria (he also co-founded the Boomtown Co-op, an urban-style country winery in Castlemaine, known for their gorgeous vin de soif). His first vintage was 2015.
The strength in this tiny label is talent and exuberance of Pat himself: he's dedicated to uncovering unique vineyards in Central Victoria, whether it’s tiny dry-grown plots in Malmsbury, obscure plantings of indigenous Venetian varieties or deep red, iron rich sites planted to beautifully bloody and mineral Nebbiolo. His relationships with his growers are fierce, in part due to his charming personality, but also because he works alongside them wherever he can, sharing ethics and values on the land and in the cellar.
Pat’s wines are made with passionate intuition and minimal intervention across the board—not necessarily with the aim of producing 'low fi' wine he says, but to give a truer representation of the season and terroir. He thus calls it 'hi-fi'—we like it. Due to the negociant-style nature of the Little Reddie beast, the wines available change as frequently as the vintage and places from which they derive. There are some mainstays, like his NEW! Nebbiolo Refosco (a play on the French nouveau and representing an immediately digestible style of red), the luscious “Super Juice” rosé, his cheeky Pét-nat, and Pinot and Chardonnay from the Rush Brothers vineyard in Malmsbury. Added to this are his SYR (Single Year Release) projects, which are always rare and exciting things. They have recently included a bottle fermented Prosecco from Nagambie and a Shiraz carved from a small parcel off Bannockburn Vineyards’ Winery Block.