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Giant Steps `Gladysdale Vineyard` Pinot Noir

Yarra Valley, Victoria

Giant Steps

While the Innocent Bystander wines are made from grapes grown across the Yarra, the Giant Steps wines are produced exclusively from single vineyard sites...

Grapes are selected from estate-owned and leased vineyards, as well as from long-term contracted growers. Head winemaker Steve Flamsteed and his team are making some of the best wines in Australia from these sites. Their aim is to express in each wine the character of the site, grape and vintage, and this they achieve by meticulous work in the vineyard and minimum intervention in the winery. Wines from their three main vineyard sites (Sexton, Tarraford and Applejack) have won 12 trophies and 27 gold medals across all wine shows in the last four years.

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Glaysdale Vineyard was planted in 1995 and is situated in the Upper Yarra Valley to the south east of the traditional ‘valley floor’. The higher altitudes of 320 metres result in cooler growing conditions, despite the westerly aspect. The distinctive dark-red volcanic loam soil is a distinguishing feature of the vineyard. Frost, high rainfall (during inopportune times) and hungry native wildlife are major challenges at Gladysdale, but the risk is well worth the return.

Vintage information

2012 was a very rewarding season in well managed vineyards. Spring rains resulted in healthy canopies. Mild summer days with plentiful warmth and sunshine - thankfully without the heat spikes of warmer vintages – and an Indian summer that stretched into April were perfect for ripening late in the season. Harvest began on the 23rd of March. Fruit condition across the vineyards was excellent, and wine quality across the board is very high. 


The fruit was hand picked and hand sorted. 30% of fruit was added to open vats as whole bunches. The remaining fruit was destemmed, but not crushed, and added to the base of whole bunches. The fruit was given a three-day cold soak with no cap work and then the vats were allowed to warm to ambient temperatures to initiate a wild fermentation. This took about 10 days to complete, during which time the vats were drained and returned by gravity with lots of aeration, and a small amount of cap work was done - twice daily plunges for the final four days of ferment. Ferment temperatures peaked at about 32°C. Once the ferments were dry the vats were emptied into an airbag press and pressed to tank. After a short settling, the wine was racked off gross lees to oak for malolactic fermentation. It was bottled on the 7th of February 2013.

Tasting Notes

Pale ruby in colour with a slight purple tinge, the 2012 vintage presents aromas of redcurrants, cranberries and Provencal herbs with hints of tree bark and wild mushrooms. Light-bodied, crisp and bursting with lively red fruit and herbal flavours in the mouth, it has a soft grip of tannins and a long, earthy finish.

Vintage information

Vintage 2012
Grape varieties 100% Pinot Noir
Region Yarra Valley, Victoria
Winemaker Steve Flamsteed, Tim Shand, Phil Sexton
Alcohol (ABV) 13%
Acidity 6.1g/l
Residual Sugar 0.15g/l
Wine pH 3.61