The Mind-Blowing 2015s from Kumeu River

There are many producers that are worth following year in, year out, such is their quality. That group narrows somewhat when the value-for-money element is added, such is the nature of the fine wine market today. New Zealand's Kumeu River is absolutely at the top of its game and has been for some time. Not only are these wines exceptional quality, regularly beating more expensive Burgundies in blind tastings, but they remain some of the best value wines that money can buy.

In the latest edition of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW reviewed 78 newly released 2015 whites. Remarkably (or perhaps not so remarkable to those who know these wines), all four of the Kumeu River wines that feature in this offer placed in the top ten, with Hunting Hill and Matés placing first and second respectively, Estate Chardonnay seventh and Coddington ninth. In fact with 95 points, Hunting Hill was the joint highest scoring wine out of all 312 whites and reds that she tasted – an incredible achievement.

All four wines featured today have something different to offer. The Estate Chardonnay is unquestionably the best value wine here – it is rich, open-knit yet well balanced by a mineral backbone and most importantly, it is drinking beautifully now. The Coddington is the underrated gem – essentially it is the Estate Chardonnay with the volume turned up a notch. Hunting Hill is a powerful, nuanced and very complex Chardonnay that has the capability to age. Matés 2015 may well be the best ever from this vineyard – it is a tour-de-force of wine-making and a great exemplar of what New Zealand can achieve with the Chardonnay grape.

These are magnificent white wines with great balance of ripe fruit and brisk acidity. Previous vintages trounced their much more expensive peers from Burgundy in a recent blind tasting that you can read about here but 2015 is yet another phenomenal chapter in the Kumeu River story.


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2015 Estate Chardonnay, Kumeu River

Colour Region Vintage Wine Size Cs Bts GBP
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New Zealand2015Chardonnay Estate, Kumeu RiverHV170150.00cs92 LPBAdd to Basket
New Zealand2015Chardonnay Estate, Kumeu RiverBT888140.00cs92 LPBAdd to Basket
All prices exclude UK duty & VAT and all wines are offered subject to remaining unsold. E&OE.

“The 2015 Estate Chardonnay is more open-knit and less taut than the single vineyard wines, with an expressive nose of ripe nectarines, pink grapefruit and guava, plus underlying notes of baking bread and ginger. Medium-bodied, it offers richness and good depth in the mouth with a an approachable, refreshing backbone and great harmony.”

92 points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate # 228

“Pale lemon colour with a pure pear, peach and lemon blossom nose, the palate on the 2015 is initially flinty and mineral before fleshing out with ripe stone fruits and a hint of gun-smoke. Licks of refreshing acidity balance the pure fruit and smoky intensity to the fruit, leaving an almost lemon-blossom finish. Immediately enjoyable but long on the finish.”

16.5 points, Farr Vintners


2015 Coddington Chardonnay, Kumeu River

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New Zealand2015Coddington Chardonnay, Kumeu RiverHV230190.00cs91+ LPBAdd to Basket
New Zealand2015Coddington Chardonnay, Kumeu RiverBT640180.00cs91+ LPBAdd to Basket
All prices exclude UK duty & VAT and all wines are offered subject to remaining unsold. E&OE.

“The 2015 Coddington Chardonnay is youthfully muted with subtle suggestions of lemon curd, lime leaves and grapefruit peel plus a yeasty, toasty, cedary waft. Light to medium-bodied, fine, fresh and delicate in the mouth, it delivers good citrus and yeasty notes.” 91+ points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate # 228

“Ripe peaches and a touch of honey on the nose underneath a struck-match note that adds a lovely layer of complexity. The palate is flinty and smoky, with a ripe lemon curd flavour and an oily, viscous texture. Concentrated, ripe and intense, this is a juicy style which is already open and delicious to drink. A line of lemon and lime acidity through the finish cuts through the power and leaves the wine perfectly balanced.” 17+ points, Farr Vintners


2015 Hunting Hill Chardonnay, Kumeu River

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New Zealand2015Hunting Hill Chardonnay, Kumeu RiverBT706240.00cs95 LPBAdd to Basket
All prices exclude UK duty & VAT and all wines are offered subject to remaining unsold. E&OE.

“The 2015 Hunting Hill Chardonnay displays a youthful restraint, yet nonetheless delivers an exciting array of stone fruit, pink grapefruit, ginger and marzipan notes with subtle hints of orange blossoms, crushed stones and lightly buttered toast. Medium bodied and tightly woven, is has a lively backbone supportting [sic] the generous flavor layers, finishing with great length and depth. As usual - just gorgeous!”

95 points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate # 228

“Toast, struck-flint and fresh citrus fruit on the nose, this layered and complex wine is very mineral and youthful at this stage. With great tension of fresh fruits and flinty smoke from the new oak, there is still great power and intensity of fruit layered through the mid palate. Still youthful, but with perfect balance and concentration on the finish, this will be yet another long-lived and very fine example of Hunting Hill.”

17.5+ points, Farr Vintners


2015 Maté’s Vineyard Chardonnay, Kumeu River

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New Zealand2015Maté's Vineyard Chardonnay, Kumeu RiverBT430255.00cs94+ LPBAdd to Basket
All prices exclude UK duty & VAT and all wines are offered subject to remaining unsold. E&OE.

“The 2015 Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay is a cracking example of this vineyard/vintage, starting with a youthfully reticent nose of lemon curd, grapefruit juice and peach blossoms with hints of crushed stones, lime leaves and brioche. The medium-bodied palate is tightly wound with an electric backbone of freshness supporting the intense citrus and mineral flavors, finishing with great length. It needs another 3-4 years in bottle to really get into its groove.”

94+ points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Advocate # 228

“Bright lemon colour in the glass, the nose here is immediately aromatic with great density of ripe lemon, peach and even a little apricot cream on the nose. The palate is broad, ripe and viscous with incredible concentration and weight of ripe stone fruits. Hints of cream, gun-smoke, and even toasted oats give a great breadth and complexity to the flavour profile. The volume of flavour is lifted by balancing, refreshing acidity. The finish is very long and powerful. This is one of the best Maté's Vineyard wines in years, hugely impressive.”

18.5 points, Farr Vintners