Shingleback, Red Knot Chardonnay 2012
While the McLaren Vale in South Australia is best known for its ripe spicy berry Shiraz, some vintages from the region also produce very good whites, and 2012 was definitely one of those years.
The beauty of the McLaren Vale is that when Mother Nature is kind to the vignerons, you don’t have to pay the earth for a premium level wine. Take, for example, the 2012 Red Knot Chardonnay which is produced by the Davey Family owned “Shingleback” Estate.
There’s not a lot of depth of colour in the glass but upfront there are hints of the typically ripe peach and watermelon flavours that are synonymous with McLaren Vale Chardy, but winemakers Kym and John Davey have blended 10% Semillon fruit to the current release to produce a clean, crisp “green gooseberry” style finish to balance the ever so slightly nutty and oak characters that show across the mid-palate. It’s not one over those heavy over-oaked types that have turned consumers away from the Chardonnay brand and there’s a good lashing of acid which tends to control the fruit in a way that is reminiscent of a good WA SSB (Semillon Sauvignon Blanc)
At the $12 to $15 price point, the 2012 vintage is punching well above its weight and I reckon that it’s the best Red Knot Chardonnay we’ve seen in recent years. It’s a drink now style but well worth keeping an eye out for.