Estate Chardonnay, Kumeu River 2019
The quality of the Estate Chardonnay in 2019 is remarkable. Pale lemon colour in the glass, creamy, smoky citrus and riper peach come through on the nose in tandem with the textbook flinty reduction that we have come to expect from Kumeu River. The palate has superb delineation of citrus, stone and even tropical pineapple fruit, but is tamed by a hit of zesty acidity. There is real weight and viscosity, with deep honeyed lemon and buttery poached pears coming through. The struck match and savoury spices add layers of complexity through the mid-palate, but everything is in balance despite the power. Long and harmonious, a superb wine that will drink well in the next 12 months but will no doubt improve and evolve with bottle age for a decade. This is a contender for the best Estate ever, alongside the brilliant 2014 and 2010 vintages.
|Score: 17+||Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, July 2020|
The real steal is the 2019 Estate Chardonnay. It is absolutely glorious. A selection of the best grapes from 'six different vineyards in the Kumeu region'. Hand-harvested, whole-bunch pressed, indigenous-yeast fermentation, 100% barrel fermentation, 100% malolactic conversion and 11-month maturation in barrel.
Pale greenish straw. Some super-delicate oak on the nose (or do I just mean a hint of savoury Côte d'Or perfume?!). So pure on the nose yet with great grip on the palate and already accessible in a grapefruit sort of way. With this intensity of fruit, it will clearly evolve into something even more convincing but you could certainly enjoy it now. It has both weight and a crystalline quality. VGV Drink 2020 – 2025
|Score: 16.5+||Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, September 2020|
The estate Chardonnay is a blend of six different vineyards with approximately 20% fermented in new oak barrels. Texturally, this cuvée offers a sense of flow; it is relaxed in its own skin but provides welcome tension on the precise finish thanks to a line of firm acidity that will leave you smacking your lips. The 20% new oak is well integrated, contributing delicate nougat flavors, and allowing the subtle nectarine and honeydew melon flavors to shine on the medium-length finish.
|Score: 91||Rebecca Gibb MW, vinous.com, November 2020|
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