***** Outstanding Winery, James Halliday, 2015 Australian Wine Companion
“The primary accent is on pinot noir and chardonnay, accounting for all but 2.7 ha, which is predominantly shiraz and a little viognier. Winemaking is by Yering Station (Willy Lunn), Giaconda (Rick Kinzbrunner), Hoddles Creek Estate (Franco D’Anna) and Oakridge (David Bicknell), as impressive a quartet of winemakers as one could wish for.” James Halliday, Australian Wine Companion.
***** A producer that demonstrates a deep commitment to terroir in producing Australia’s finest and most distinctive wines. Nick Stock Good Wine Guide 2012
“Garry and Julie Hounsell’s Toolangi has emerged as one of the Yarra’s most serious chardonnay players.....[Gary Hounsell] produces three (chardonnay) wines off his single 12-hectare vineyard and employs three winemakers with vastly contrasting approaches to make them. The result is three nicely differentiated styles, all of them excellent.” Huon Hooke
Toolangi is owned and run with enthusiastic flair by Garry and Julie Hounsell. In a very short space of time, they have acquired an enviable reputation for consistently producing some of the most expressive, single-vineyard wines in the Yarra Valley. In a region not short on quality producers, we have no reservation in suggesting that with Toolangi, we are working with one of the very finest. An outstanding estate vineyard, fastidious viticulture, low yields, terrific winemakers, and owners that are determined to do whatever it takes to produce the highest possible quality: these are the elements that make Toolangi such an excellent fit for our portfolio.
Toolangi’s Dixon’s Creek site is well drained with gentle slopes, all with a north-easterly orientation. The soil is predominantly clay, covered by a thin layer of topsoil of shale and stone and is planted predominantly to Chardonnay, then Pinot, and some tiny holdings of Shiraz and Viognier as well. The Hounsells are justifiably proud of the quality of fruit this site produces and spare no expense in making the most of their raw materials. Employing two full time viticulturalists to pamper and care for the site is the means to the end goal; to grow the very best fruit possible and then have the wine finished by the best experts in the business. Recognising that terroir alone has little significance without quality winemakers to bring the fruit-to-glass, the Hounsells have assembled a dream-team of winemaking talent to finish the wines. It’s an intriguing, very successful model that recognises the enticing synergy between nature and nurture. Thus, the Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs are being looked after by the talented quartet of Rick Kinzbrunner (Giaconda), Willy Lunn (Yering Station), Franco D’Anna (Hoddles Creek) and David Bicknell (Oakridge). For the Shiraz you’ll find Matt Harrop (Shadowfax) tuning the winemaking dials and soon Rick Kinzbrunner as well. We are sure you’ll agree that it’s not a bad roster of decision makers at all! And the results? A simply fascinatingly and diverse set of wines, brimming with the personality of their site and of their winemakers. A set of wines that we only expect to get stronger in the years to come.
The 13 hectare Toolangi vineyard produces wines at three different levels from three segregated parcels. ‘Toolangi’ is a juicy, bright and rewarding entry to the range. The Estate wines offer a step up in depth, resonance and complexity, while the Reserve is a premium selection from Toolangi’s ‘grand cru’ parcel, and made only when the fruit is deemed of requisite quality. Finally, this set of wines has been receiving some great praise from the media