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Fertile grazing land for over 100 years prior, the 11-hectare Willow Creek Vineyard was planted in 1989.  Surrounded by ocean on three sides with a cool maritime climate, Willow Creek Vineyard’s wines are a pure expression of the site. Winemaker Geraldine McFaul’s understanding of the terroir and its subtleties is instinctive, while her careful and complementary handling creates expressive wines where less is more. Manipulation of the intrinsic balance provided by each season is avoided wherever possible.

 

 

With a fastidious focus on cool­-climate chardonnay and pinot noir, winemaker Geraldine McFaul makes some of the most elegant single vineyard wines on the Mornington Peninsula. Under the expert hands of original viticulturists Robbie O’Leary and, more recently, Ant Davenport, Willow Creek Vineyard’s fruit is hand tended, block by block in regard to pruning, canopy management, yield control, and harvest. The vineyard consistently produces fruit of an excellent quality, lending itself to minimal intervention and manipulation in the winery.

 

 

Willow Creek Vineyard Chardonnay typically exhibits notes of stone fruit and citrus, while a judicious touch of new French oak bestows a delicate nutty character. The palate balances a creamy texture against a backbone of flint, while a fresh line of acidity drives the palate.

Our Pinot Noir is enticingly perfumed, displaying lifted aromas of wild red cherries and forest floor, while the palate possesses a structured elegance of finely etched tannins. A portion of whole-bunch and carbonic maceration yields greater structure and complexity to the fruit from our O’Leary Block.

 

 

When working with exemplary fruit, McFaul says the biggest challenge is “doing less rather than more”. For the wines from the Willow Creek Vineyard it’s all about letting the vineyard shine through. Acknowledging consistent excellence across successive vintages, James Halliday’s Wine Companion has awarded Willow Creek Vineyard 5 Red Stars, for producing wines of exemplary quality and typicity.