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Pimpernel Vineyards

Bars, Wineries Coldstream
Pimpernell Winery bottles
Photograph: Cass Knowlton

Time Out says

This small winery is off the beaten track, but it's well worth seeking it out

It's the chardonnay that does it. Fruit forward, creamy, mellow and eminently drinkable, it's a chardy for chardy lovers. None of this "well our chardonnay isn't like most chardonnays, it's more like a riesling in disguise..." you might find elsewhere in the Yarra Valley. Mark and Fiona Horrigan, who run Pimpernel, take their winemaking seriously, and their drops reflect the characteristics of the grapes.

They are also serious about terroir – so serious, in fact, that Mark's mother pocketed a couple of limestones from a pinot noir vineyard in Burgandy. When they returned to Australia, Mark had the stones analysed and subsequently buried more than 250 tonnes of similar crushed limestone in his own vineyard. The pinot noir grapes that grow above it produce some of the best pinot the Yarra Valley has to offer.

Fruit is picked by hand, and little is done to it to interfere with the natural fermentation process. The result is wine that is rich, complex and downright delicious. This is not a cheap and cheerful winery – very little here is under $40 a bottle. There's no on-site restaurant, and the cellar door wouldn't accommodate more than ten people at a time – giant hen's parties, look elsewhere. But for those who appreciate good wine and the people who work hard at growing and perfecting it, it's well worth a stop on your Yarra Valley travels. 


Address: 6 Hill Road
Opening hours: Thu-Sun 11am-4.30pm
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