Tasmanian Chardonnay – #WorldWineTravel

This year the #WorldWineTravel group travelled to Australia and New Zealand. This month’s topic is Australian Sparkling, Fortified, and Tasmanian wines.

Tasmania is the southernmost state of Australia, located between 40 and 43 degrees south latitude. There are mild, rainy winters and cool summers with the interior being cooler than the coast and there is a lot of wind. The island also has quite a number of mountains. Vineyards are located mostly on the lower slopes of the mountains. While the industry began in the 1800s, it was deemed an impossible location and for 100 years, no vineyards were planted. Today’s industry really began in the 1950s.

Photo Credit @Vineyards.com

The soils are mainly sedimentary soils with some basalt and some sandy areas. Much scholarly research has been done on these areas as the industry is still growing. At the moment, there is one appellation for Tasmania wine for the entire region but they are looking to make subregions or geographical indications (GI). Thus far, seven have been identified.

Photo Credit @Wineregionaustralia.com

Much of the group focused on sparkling wine from Tasmania. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the basis for their famed sparklers but also make great still wines. While Chardonnay is the second most widely planted grape, it is increasingly getting more interest these days and grows extremely well in the cool maritime climate of Tasmania.

Tasmania also grows Riesling and Sauvignon blanc. The mix of grapes is closer to those that we see in New Zealand.

The wine I had was Devil’s Corner Chardonnay. The fruit came from estate vineyards on the East coast of the country and from the Tamar Valley. It had 12.5% alcohol with 15% fermented in oak and 85% in stainless steel. The wine spent three months in old oak for 3 months. Apparently, the 2021 vintage had small yields but concentrated fruit.

Photo Credit @Devil’sCorner website

When I tasted the Chardonnay I choose which was from Devil’s Corner. I was surprised at the beautiful color, a deep lemon with some green hints. The bouquet was all cool climate chardonnay with apple, melon, some brioche notes but not over the top oak. These came from the partial oak ferment of the grapes. The wine also had great acidity, a lot of length and persistence.

It reminded me of some of the Chardonnay I tried in Oregon and how much I enjoyed those wines. Like in Oregon, Pinot Noir gets more attention but Chardonnay is, in my view, the one to watch.

Devil’s Corner is owned by Brown Brothers, a fourth generation winery that began making wine in Australia in 1889 in Milawa, Victoria.

I paired the wine with two dishes, one a shrimp, eggplant, and rice dish which worked well with the acidity on this wine. For dinner my son made a lasagna with my mom and that was perfect with this cheerful bottle.

I am really excited to try more wines from Tasmania and to read the posts of my fellow bloggers.

Join us for our chat later today on Twitter at 11:00am EDT.. You can find us at #WorldWineTravel and join the conversation. Be sure to check out all of these posts:

6 comments

  1. Thank you for the in-depth breakdown of the wine-growing areas. I had read before that Pipers River was a sub-region within the Tamar Valley. It was nice to get the clarification and have the southern regions mapped out so clearly!

  2. What a fantastic find Susannah! I’ve never seen a Tas Chard before. Even more fascinating to hear that it paired well with lasagna! Thanks so much for featuring this wine with us!

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