This is a spectacular chardonnay, eschewing malolactic in the name of precision and freshness, while sacrificing nothing in the way of flavour and textural detail in doing so. A reductive riff of gunflint segues to notes of white fig, honeydew melon, nectarine and creamed cashew. A chassis of mineral and bright acidity carry the flavours long and broad, chaperoned by high class oak that is nestled into the fray. This will age beautifully over the coming decade, but oozes class and such poise already that it is difficult to refrain from opening a bottle or, at least in my case, finishing the glass.
This is now the third bottle of Tapanappa Tiers Chardonnay 2018 and each time it gets better. Now officially at ‘phwoar’ level. For a little context about Tiers, you need to start here. In my mind, this is the model of restrained power – an acknowledgement that Chardonnay can be both bold and refreshing, which the best white Burgundy does so well. This ’18 is a bigger, broader wine than the ’17 vintage release but I think I like it even more. It’s a full-flavoured Chardonnay, all white peach fruit, the oak intertwined throughout the palate, the finish still sprightly and vital, the acidity briney and almost unexpectedly so after the mid palate width. It feels powerful, uncompromisingly varietal… a Chardonnay for Chardonnay drinkers. Delicious, mouthfilling wine. Would I buy it? Yes!
Quite firm and positive. Kumquat-bright fruit. Still very young. Very emphatic and relatively bumptious. Big and bold. 2020 - 2030