Exciting times and an anxious wait….

This week has seen the first of our picking for Vintage 2014.  It has started off small, firstly a parcel of Chardonnay picked on Tuesday and then yesterday the first of our Pinot Noir. It has been a difficult year for all growers, some more than others.  After months of no real rainfall to speak of, we have now had approximately 19 mm over the last 24 hours, with an uncertain forecast for the coming week – we are ready and waiting!  Below are some images from the first Pinot pick.

early morning mist

Heavy fog rolled in…

drying grapes

Waiting for the fruit to dry…

tipping

Tipping into the destemmer

in tank

Safely in tank ready for ferment 🙂

Curly Flat in James Halliday’s ‘Wineries of the Month’

As there are so many great cellar doors to visit these days, to make it a little easier, each month James Halliday suggests one of his top 5 star rated wineries from each state that he thinks is really worth making the effort to visit, and of course taste!

Link to JH website: http://www.winecompanion.com.au/wineries/wineries-of-the-month

VH & Winery

Our Winery and Cellar Door

We’re happy to say that our winery has been nominated as this months must see Victorian winery, and like everything we set out to do we pride ourselves on delivering not only great wines to taste, but a special Cellar Door experience to match.

CF cellar door_front door

Cellar Door Entrance

With our cellar door we like to think we provide an experience that is reflective our wines; unique and individual.  Rather than have dedicated ‘cellar door’ staff you will be greeted by people who work hands on with the wines that you will taste.  While we all talk on a similar thread about the vintage conditions behind the wines,  each of us infuse personal anecdotes giving even deeper insights into wine growing that a ‘usual’ cellar door experience wouldn’t allow.  Where we can, we’ll also give you a tour of winery and talk in greater detail about our philosophy and how we go about things.

Home for our cellar door is found in the refurbished 1880’s homestead, that we call Vintage Hall which has it’s own blend of style and relaxed charm.  Being a great space, we also have several food and wine events throughout the year where great chefs such as Andrew McConnell transform Vintage Hall into their restaurant for a day, while we provide Curly Flat wines young and old.  We only inform our mailing list customers of this, so if your not on the list, come up and see us or join online.

CF cellar door_inside 2

Inside Vintage Hall at Curly Flat

The Macedon Ranges is also one the best kept secrets in wine and we of course are not the only cellar door going.  We also recommend visiting Granite Hills, Paramoor, Cobaw Ridge but to name a few. You can easily spend the day up here visiting cellar doors and theres exceptional food to be found in the bustling Piper Street in Kyneton where many providores will tempt you with their differing fare.  For something different you can also go over to the Holgates microbrewery in Woodend and enjoy a tasting paddle with food also available.  They are many, many ways to spend your day!

Curly Flat Cellar Door is open every weekend 12-5pm and by appointment during the week.  During the week just call ahead so we can ensure someone is available to meet you.  Also groups larger than 6, especially any bus group, call ahead to be sure we can look after you.  For all cellar door enquiries please call us on 03 5429 1956 in office hours.  We look forward to your visit!  For more details please visit our Cellar Door page.

Budburst! Vintage 2014 is underway…

Although 1st of September marks the start of spring (in Australia), this date is a simplification as true spring starts with the arrival of the spring equinox on the 23rd of September.  This is when the plane of the Earth’s poles are the same distance from the Sun. The amount of daylight is roughly equal to its absence, heralding the true exit of winter as the daylight hours increase from there on.  In the cool climate of the Macedon Ranges, classically budburst begins occurs from anywhere from late September to early-mid October, roughly following the spring equinox. But this year budburst has followed the calendar with almost bullet precision, occurring on the 3rd of September.

Budburst underway on our 96 block Chardonnay

Budburst underway on our 96 block Chardonnay and a close up of a bud (inset)

So this year (or vintage) is already different from any other as we have now had our earliest budburst, 10 days earlier than any other on record.  The dates below relate to the past 5 vintages plus this current year:

  • 2008 – 19th September (Vintage 2009)
  • 2009 – 29th September (Vintage 2010)
  • 2010 – 11th October (Vintage 2011)
  • 2011 – 13th September (Vintage 2012)
  • 2012 – 19th September (Vintage 2013)
  • 2013 – 3rd September (Vintage 2014)

It is worth noting that an early budburst doesn’t necessarily mean it will be an early vintage, far from it.  Our warmest winter was in 2001 (average of 10°C) but it led to our coldest growing season which culminated with the 2002 vintage.  The next warmest winter was that of 2005 (average of 9.9°C) which did lead to warm growing conditions, and the resulting 2006 vintage is one of our most celebrated.  This winter was the third warmest for us (average of 9.8°C) and with the above in mind, the passage of weather can be cold, hot and everything in between, all of which effects the ultimate harvest date.  The best indicator of harvest date though is flowering & fruit set.   If that is early, then harvest will most probably be early too and vice versa if it is late. We’ll keep you posted on that.

From there the longer term forecast (from the BOM) is for moderate to above average warmth and above average rainfall.  With the weather still not committing to being in a La Nina/El Nino pattern, but rather remaining in a neutral state, this can lead to wetter than ‘normal’ conditions, but not as prolific as it would be if it were in La Nina pattern.  So as always we wait and see what the year delivers and of course we look forward to hopefully putting it into bottle.  

Come and ‘Meet The Maker’

GrubFoodVan

 

Next Sunday on the 11th of August, Curly Flat will be at the amazing Grub Food Van in Fitzroy, along with Bress Wine, Cider and Produce, Craggy Range, Crawford River, Marquee Wines and Vinosita Wine Merchants will also be there with their tasty wares.

For just $30 you can come and taste wine from all over Victoria, as well as wines from the far reaches of the globe and of course some very tasty gourmet grub!  Click here for more details or call Sue (at Bress) on 0427 021 932.

Curly Flat comes to Bistro Moncur

CURLY FLAT COMES TO BISTRO MONCUR

On the 5th of August, we’ll be heading up to Bistro Moncur situated in the Woollahra Hotel in Woollahra, NSW.  We won’t be coming empty handed of course, as we’ll be bringing two chardonnays as well as five Pinot Noirs including the single lot release ‘The Curly’.  It will be a great night of cool climate wine and warming winter food, what could be better?

The cost of $170 p/person includes entry to Pinot Noir Australia on August the 6th 5.30 -8.30 p.m. With over 150 Australian Pinot Noirs to try, its not to be missed…

All bookings & enquiries are to be made through Curly Flat,  please phone us on 03 5429 1956 or via email: office@curlyflat.com  Please find the degustation menu below:

Monday  5th  August  2013, 6.30 pm

Curly Flat Wine Dinner @ Bistro Moncur (Chef Sam Kane)

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Jerusalem Artichoke Velouté with Oyster Beignets

2011 Curly Flat Chardonnay

2010 Curly Flat Chardonnay

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Salad of Beetroot & Heirloom Carrots

Woodside Goats Curd

Sunflower seeds& Pomegranate

2007 & 2009 Curly Flat Pinot Noir

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 Pan Roasted Duck Breast, Duck Confit Pithiviers & Braised Witlof

 2008 & 2010   Curly Flat Pinot Noir

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 Today’s Cheeses with Crackers Walnuts, Quince Paste & Apple

2010 Curly Flat “The Curly” Pinot Noir

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 Coffee & Petit Fours

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Curly Flat coming to Grossi Florentino 22nd of July…

Grossi

Curly Flat comes to Grossi Florentino Degustation Menu

22nd July, 4 courses, 7 wines – $160 p/person

For BOOKINGS & Enquiries, call Grossi Florentino on  03 9662 1811

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SMOKED PETUNA OCEAN TROUT,

Tapioca, Apple, Celery, Yarra Valley Caviar, Yuzu

2010 Curly Flat Chardonnay & 2011 Curly Flat Chardonnay

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DUCK AND PORCINI TORTELLINI,

Candied Pear

  2008 Curly Flat Pinot Noir & 2010 Curly Flat Pinot Noir

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Abbacchio alla romana

Wet roasted suckling lamb, tomato, white wine, sage,

rosemary, garlic, breadcrumbs and parmesan.

2007 Curly Flat Pinot Noir & 2009 Curly Flat Pinot Noir

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CHEESE

Époisses de Bourgogne, Spiced Fig, Stollen

2010 Curly Flat “The Curly” Pinot Noir

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Chris Shanahan on our 2011 Williams Crossing releases…

Williams Crossing by Curly Flat Macedon Chardonnay 2011 $24

WC1 lay down

“Curly Flat makes some of Australia’s most exciting, complex chardonnays. The second label, Williams Crossing, comprises material declassified from the Curly Flat label. But even these “offcuts” have been completely barrel fermented and matured, with all the hands-on winemaking attention of its more expensive cellar mate. That means one of the best value chardonnays on the market. In the cool 2011 vintage it’s perhaps a little leaner and tighter than usual with attractive grapefruit and melon varietal flavours woven through the rich barrel-derived texture. At two years’ age it’s brilliantly young and fresh, suggesting further evolution in bottle.”  

For our own tasting note please click here.

Williams Crossing by Curly Flat Macedon Pinot Noir 2011 $25

WXp11 lay down

“Curly Flat’s second label, Williams Crossing, is lighter bodied and paler coloured, but that was to be expected in such a cold vintage. Despite its comparative lightness, the 2011 delivers concentrated, definitive pinot flavour with a backbone of firm, fine tannins.”

For our tasting note please click here.

Courtesy of Chris Shanahan  Australian wine & beer judge, writer and connoisseur     www.chrisshanahan.com