Rouleur Chardonnay 2017 (95JH)


Winemaker, Matt East writes, “The 2017 Rouleur Chardonnay opens with white nectarine, lemon barley fragrance, a hint of lees and complex sulphides. The palate is tangy with a core of mineral acid balanced by grapefruit citrus and white fleshed stone fruits. There’s curd, and just a lick of new oak adding extra layers behind fine fruit.”

Andrew Graham (, 18.5/20, “Matt East’s Shiraz and Grenache have been getting all the love lately, but his Yarra Chardonnay is my favourite wine. Clean lines aplenty here, the style made without malo and so very fresh. A small proportion of skin contact (which Matt really likes as an influence) too, and it adds an extra tang. Real tension between acidity and the flavour width is the key to the appeal here – nervy acidity, but not harsh at all. The overall effect is almost sparkling base-like at first glance, with much delicacy and subtlety, but when you drink it you realise it’s not unripe or hard. Just a lovely, unforced wine. Delicious. Best drinking: Time will be kind. In fact, it might be better next year, or even the year after.”

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Winery notes:

  • We sourced fruit for our 2017 Chardonnay from two exceptional vineyards situated in the cool Upper Yarra Valley, where both blocks provided a variation of high quality clones for us to play with (76, P58 and i10V1).
  • Vintage 2017 in the Yarra Valley was long, mild and well suited to our elegant, restrained fruit style. Chardonnay was a star in 2017 and we look forward to watching these wines unwind and build in bottled complexity.
  • Our fruit is all handpicked and sorted with a larger portion (95%) being whole bunch pressed, full solids run straight to barrel. The remaining fruit was destemmed and fermented on skins in small open pots for 5 days to add complexity and mouthfeel.
  • Once in barrel, the lightly sulphured juice is allowed to settle before fermentation kicks off with mostly wild yeast. Bâttonage is practised regularly during the cooler months to build further layers and the wine remains on gross lees for the entire time in oak (9 months). We avoid MLF and prefer to ‘walk a bright acid line’ keeping our Chardonnay pure, fresh and linear – allowing it to evolve in bottle over time.
  • In mid November 2017, the wine was racked to tank and settled for a few weeks before being fined, lightly filtered and bottled.

Matt East grew up in the Yarra Valley and worked alongside his father in the family vineyard from a young age. He dedicated 10 years to viticulture with a focus on Pinot Noir and made wine in the shed while growing up. He further honed his skills in local wineries during vintage and eventually left the Yarra Valley to study, travel and pursue a career in the broader wine industry. Rouleur wines err on the side of early picked where bright natural acid works in sync with varietal perfume, flavour and textures. All Rouleur fruit is handpicked and sorted, with the Yarra Valley Chardonnay being crafted from select clones (P76, P58, i10V1) where gentle pressing of bunches dominates before being gravity fed to larger format oak barrels. The Rouleur red wines are mostly fermented with whole berries intact, while whole bunches are opted-for when site, vintage and style dictate accordingly.

Customer review

  1. Chris Foster

    95 Points, James Halliday’s Wine Companion, “From two vineyards in Woori Yallock and Macclesfield, hand-picked, 90% whole-bunch pressed to barrel, 10% fermented on skins, 10% mlf, matured for 9 months on lees in French oak (15% new). Until the finish you think this is simply a good Yarra Valley chardonnay, then the power of the finish and aftertaste hits you. Good stuff.”

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