Tasted blind at Farr Vintners Kumeu/White Burgundy tasting. The 2009 Maté's Vineyard Chardonnay from Kumeu River has a well-defined and detailed bouquet with yellow flowers infusing the bright citrus fruit, all with fine mineralité. The palate is fresh and vibrant on the entry with good acidity, pithy and slightly waxy in texture with a complex finish that still has a touch of oak to be absorbed. Still, this is an excellent wine with the substance to suggest that long-term aging is advisable. Drink: 2016 - 2028
|Score: 93||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, May 2015|
The 2009 Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay has a beautifully expressive and complex nose already, with notes of ripe apples, white peaches, butterscotch and pineapple over savory undertones of croissant, crushed nuts and yeast extract plus a whiff of struck match and wet pebbles. Medium bodied with a beautiful satiny quality to the texture, the fruit remains a bit tight though very concentrated with crisp acid to enliven and a long layered finish. Consider drinking it 2013 to 2019+.
|Score: 94+||Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (197), October 2011|
This is a little phenolic with lemon rind and hints of cream and apple. Some would call it tannic. Full and fruity nougat with lovely savory and ripe fruit character. Layered and beautiful. Corton-Charlemagne. Shows a salty undertone.
|Score: 93||James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, December 2012|
Sweet on the nose the palate has depth of flavour fleshy fruit with honeydew melon and
greengage. Mid palate freshness balances the richness with citrus giving a lighter feel at the
back the finish is long fresh with slate and mineral. 2015-20
|Score: 95||Derek Smedley MW, DerekSmedleyMW.co.uk, June 2015|
Aromatic, soft and supple, with honey, butterscotch and toasted brioche notes that are as intense as they appear effortless. This delivers plenty of lemon and pear flavors, with a long finish. Drink now through 2016. 1,000 cases made.
Chardonnay is another strength among the country's whites, though the category tends to be dominated by perennial superstar Kumeu River. This year there are four outstanding Chardonnays from this North Island estate on the outskirts of Auckland, including this report's highest-scoring white, the Kumeu Coddington 2009 (94).
|Score: 92||MaryAnn Worobiec, Wine Spectator, May 2012|
Complex and fine with grapefruit, peach, subtle toast. Nice concentration, some minerality and focused fruit.
|Score: 94||Jamie Goode, Wineanorak.com, May 2016|
Mid greenish straw. Nervy, savoury nose and pretty stolid on the palate. Lots of palate presence and a bit of sweet heat on the end so surely burgundy? Good balance and with weight but slightly sour on the end. Not quite as refined as some of the other Kumeu River Chardonnays. Drink 2013-2019.
|Score: 16.5||Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, May 2015|
Barrels are by Séguin Moreau and Mercurey so quite strong but not as strong as the Gillet. 30% new oak. Older vines and Mendoza clone. Planted 1990. Last vineyard picked each year. Leafroll virus is in Mendoza clone so you get millerandage (some small berries within the bunches) but also harder to ripen.
Green fruit and hay and a touch of caramel sweetness. More spicy too and oak very discreet. Complex and has a definite phenolic grip. Mealy and long and so fresh. Lovely delicate reductive notes and smoky. Very creamy too, especially on the nose. (JH) 13.5%
|Score: 17.5||Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, June 2013|