Mornington maestro releases top Chardonnay & Pinot Noir

Paul Scorpo first introduced Eocene to the world in 2010, when an exceptional vintage for the Mornington Peninsula moved him to bottle his best Chardonnay parcel separately. The wine was a statement, and it hit home.

The name comes from the Merricks North site’s red-brown, clay-rich soils, which are derived from tertiary Eocene volcanics dating back about 40 million years.

A first Pinot bearing the name appeared in 2017, and featured Paul’s younger high-density plantings of Abel clone Pinot Noir.

And now, for the first time, we have a separate edition of Pinot Noir produced solely from the original plantings, which date back to 1997.

Paul’s entry-level Chardonnay and Pinot – named Aubaine and Noirien respectively – are renowned as offering a fantastically focused Mornington Peninsula experience. The Estate wines are similarly a benchmark for these varieties in this region. So you can just imagine the class and complexity of these top wines.

Well, if you splash out and treat yourself, you won’t have to use your imagination at all. Your senses will do it all for you.

2019 Scorpo Eocene Chardonnay $70

From vines planted in 2008. Clones are 95 Bernard, P50 , I1V10. Wild yeast fermented. No MLF. 20% new oak from the Sirugue cooperage. Bottled unfined.

A seductive nose, yet one that holds its cards close to the chest, with restraint and elegance showcased. Fresh lemon and lime dominate the fruits, however florals are equally present with orange blossom and jasmine. There is an openness to the nose, much like a walk in a meadow with fresh flowers and cut grass. The palate supports the nose: elegance, restraint, fresh and pure. It is precise and detailed with a fine gravelly seam driving the core long and deep. The fruits are again lemon and lime with a smattering of flowers. Hints of toast and nutmeg in the background provide an added richness and complexity to a well-packaged wine. – Paul Scorpo

2018 Scorpo Eocene High-Density Vineyard Pinot Noir $87

Abel clone vines were close-planted in ’13 at 10 000 vines/ha. Hand-picked, wild yeast-open fermented with 10% whole bunches, 20 days on skins, matured for 13 months in French oak (20% new). The fruit is deep and complex, no surprise, but the savoury tannin support has also been well managed. Watch this space.

95 points. James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion

2019 Scorpo Eocene ‘Original Vineyard’ Pinot Noir $87

Vines planted in 1997. 100% MV6. 10% whole cluster. Wild yeast fermented. Unfined and unfiltered.

Intense raspberries upfront on the nose supported by earthy notes of mushroom and toasted almonds. Spicy nutmeg and cardamom elements add fragrance and herbal notes. The palate is disciplined, dense and dusty with raspberry again the dominant fruit, supported by cherries and plums. The acid is firm and tight whilst still displaying a finesse through a graphite texture. – Paul Scorpo

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