Nautilus Chardonnay is 100% Marlborough Chardonnay produced at Nautilus Estate. It is barrel-fermented style with lees ageing.
Nautilus Estate was founded in 1985 by the Hill-Smith Family and remains family owned today. Hill-Smith Family Vineyards have been making wine in Australia for over 165 years. Yalumba Estate in the Barossa was founded in 1849 by the current owner’s, Robert Hill-Smith, great grandfather. Today they have many vineyard and brands throughout Australia and New Zealand.
Nautilus Estate has remained true to its mantra of never being the biggest but always striving for the best. Recognising the winemaking complexities of the inspiring but sometimes infuriating Pinot Noir grape, Nautilus built two separate wineries; The Nautilus Pinot Cellar, built to handle Pinot as gently as possible, and the Nautilus White Winery, dedicated to crafting cool climate varieties like Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, and Grüner Veltliner. Today the estate consists of 173 acres of vineyard (in Wairau, Awatere and Southern Valleys) and the winemaker is Clive Jones.
Nautilus Chardonnay is made from fruit sourced from Nautilus’s Renwick vineyard which is blended with Dijon clone 95 grown by Jim and Debbie Greer. These vineyard sites are stony and free draining, giving naturally low yields, fantastic depth of flavour and mineral structure. From the 2016 vintage the Renwick vineyard part of the blend also includes new Burgundian clonal plantings which nicely compliments the mature clone 15 on the same site. The grapes were handpicked grapes and chilled overnight before gentle pressing direct to barrel without settling. The wine was entirely barrel fermented in french oak barriques (20% new) using indigenous yeast. A period of lees stirring post ferment adds a textural element to the palate.