Mount Mary 2015s Pre-Release Offer

Here they are, then: “the four master works,” as James Halliday called them in bestowing the title of Winery of the Year on this great Yarra Valley estate. The foundations, Halliday goes on, were laid down by John Middleton in 1971 and the wines “became legendary within a decade”. “A single word cannot possibly do justice to Mount Mary’s Quintet, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Triolet,” he continues. “But they are joined at the hip by elegance. By all means add balance, purity and length, and as a codicil add longevity demonstrated by an all-consuming tasting in 2016 of every vintage released of the four wines.”
John Middleton had a vision and stuck to it – and it happened that people loved to drink, collect and share his wines. The Middleton family has steadfastly kept faith with the style, and have managed to edge those lofty standards ever upward. Vintage conditions alter the accent, but the message, detailed and engrossing, is the same. This is a special vineyard and a family hell-bent on achieving the very best.
2015 is perhaps Mount Mary’s most emphatic declaration to date.

THE WINES* (*These will be released on Monday, 23rd October

2015 Mount Mary Triolet RRP $100
The Triolet blend, first produced at Mount Mary in 1987, was inspired by the white wines of Graves, Bordeaux. The vineyard is planted to 75% Sauvignon Blanc, 20% Semillon and 5% Muscadelle. Each variety is picked at optimum ripeness, and is fermented separately. The characteristics of optimum ripeness are different for each variety. We pick the Sauvignon Blanc after the strong herbaceous flavours have disappeared, the Semillon when the acid is not too harsh, and the Muscadelle when the flavour intensity peaks. In the winery we use mostly older barrels for this wine, with the entire production being barrel fermented. Relatively hard pressing is employed to give the wine texture, and lees stirring is carried out to add complexity and body. The Triolet is typically barrel aged for 11 months, by which time the overt fruity flavours have diminished, and complex aromas are beginning to develop.– Sam Middleton

65% sauvignon blanc, 21% semillon, 14% muscadelle, fermented separately in used oak, matured for 11 months with lees stirring. This is an uncommonly rich Triolet at this early stage, but that is all to the good, for it will mature majestically as all the vintages that preceded it have done. 96 points. James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion 2018

2015 Mount Mary Chardonnay RRP $115
We aim to make a Chardonnay with great length, which reaches a balance between richness and elegance. While some techniques are borrowed from the Burgundians, there are some departures from traditional practice in response to local factors, which ensure a unique wine. The most notable of these is that our Chardonnay does not undergo malolactic fermentation, as our local climate leaves the fruit with ideal acidity when it is picked. Our Chardonnay is matured in 30% new French oak barriques, with the balance in older barrels and large casks (1500L). The entire production is barrel fermented.  Relatively hard pressing is employed to give the wine texture, and lees stirring is carried out to add complexity and body.  The Chardonnay is matured in barrel for 11 months prior to bottling. – Sam Middleton

Most of the wine is closed with a screwcap, a small amount with Diam 30, the tightest form of Diam. Gleaming light green-gold, this is no pale and wan lover, its embrace intense, white peach just in front of grapefruit. As one would expect from Mount Mary, the oak has been as important in shaping texture and mouthfeel as imparting flavour. All up, an icon for Yarra Valley chardonnay. 97 points. James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion 2018

What a wine! Textbook Yarra Valley Chardonnay here. Nectarine, struck match, almond meal, fennel and white flowers with a grapefruity zing. Flinty, fine-boned, yet flavoursome and pow pow powerful, juicy feel, then surges and pulls tight on a super long stony finish. Just so bloody good. 97 points. Gary Walsh, The Wine Front

2015 Mount Mary Pinot Noir RRP $150
Our Pinot Noir vines were sourced from Western Victoria in 1971. This material was acquired before individual clonal selections were considered, and as such, our older Pinot blocks are a mix of many clones. A visiting French ampelographer once told John Middleton that there were in the order of 30+ clones in our original Pinot block. Subsequent plantings of Pinot on this  site have been selections from the original block, and the clonal selection has been somewhat refined. There are also some newer blocks of Pinot Noir planted (as of 2008) to American rootstocks. These are of specific clonal material, namely MV6 and 777. In the winery the emphasis is on simplicity. By today’s standards, relatively short fermentations are employed, typically 8-10 days. This is followed by 16 months of barrel maturation consisting of 25% new oak barriques. Minimal, if any, fining and filtration is carried out prior to bottling. – Sam Middleton

Bright, clear crimson-purple; everything about this wine exudes supreme class: the bouquet has a rose garden of perfume and spice, the palate a concerto for strings and clarinets, as predominantly red berry fruits glide around the finest quality tannins of the cello. The length and balance are awesome, and the wine will be singing soprano 20 years on from vintage. 99 points. Best Pinot Noir of the Year, Halliday Wine Companion 2018

I wouldn’t bother drinking this as a young wine, as delicious as it is. It just looks so perfectly suited to the cellar; indeed it’s hard to imagine a young Australian pinot noir more suited. It’s pure, tight, bright and undergrowthy at once; it bristles with spice, woodsmoke and mineral; it flashes red berries and red roses as it soars through the finish. The acid and tannin profile of this wine puts on a masterclass on structure. I drank this wine over dinner a couple of weeks ago; I tasted this wine this morning at the tasting bench; in both environments it looked equally spectacular. 97 points. Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front

2015 Mount Mary Quintet RRP $160
Our vineyard is planted to Cabernet Sauvignon (50%), Merlot (25%), Cabernet Franc (15%), Malbec (5%) and Petit Verdot (5%). The percentage of each variety that goes into the final blend changes with the season, as factors such as fruitfulness and fruit set vary. The greatest influence we have over the quality of this wine is deciding when to pick each variety. This determines not only the flavours but the quality of tannins, the acid and alcohol levels. These varieties ferment on skins for around 12-14 days.  This is followed by 22 months of barrel maturation, with 25% of the blend in large format oak (1500L or larger), and 30% in new barriques (225L). The remaining wine is matured in 2-5 year old barriques. Minimal fining and filtration is carried out prior to bottling.– Sam Middleton

Just because the Mount Mary wines are famed for their purity, elegance and balance doesn’t mean that they eschew power and layered complexity. Quintet (the five Bordeaux varieties) is the king of the portfolio, the wine that was closest to founder Dr John Middleton’s irascible heart. The vintage may have been especially great for pinot, but the rainbow of cassis, redcurrant, dried herb and bramble flavours are absolutely exemplary. 97 points. James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion 2018

It’s all just so, and first and last impressions are of a wine of supreme balance, perfect ripeness, and phenomenal length. Red and black fruits, violets, pencil shavings and sweet earthiness. Medium bodied, supple yet gravelly tannin, density and thickness, delivered with no heaviness, cool fresh raspberry acidity, and *that* finish, infused with black tea. It drinks beautifully now, and most likely in another thirty years. A new high-water mark for Mount Mary Quintet, I feel. 97+ points. Gary Walsh, The Wine Front August 2017