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Chardonnay Rays Road, Kumeu River 2021

RegionNew Zealand
Subregion New Zealand > Hawkes Bay
Grape VarietyPinot Noir

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Tasting Notes

Mangoes, lemon curd, baked apples, hazelnuts, custard and some salted caramel. Ripe and creamy with a full body. Tropical fruit and buttery layers balanced by bright acidity. Drink now. Screw cap.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, September 2022

This is served after the Village because Village includes some fruit from Rays Road. Clone 95 was planted there in 2010. They ripped out some of the Sauvignon Blanc to plant clones 548 and 15 and will plant Mendoza. Whole-bunch pressed all spontaneously fermented in old oak. Malo in barrel, 11 months on yeast lees and then fine lees in tank and bottled in May. 2,000 cases.
Quite rich and broad on the nose. The crisp acidity comes in on the finish but it seems less sleek than the Kumeu wines. 2022 - 2030

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, September 2022

This single vineyard Chardonnay is made from the best vines in Kumeu River's new vineyards in Hawke's Bay on limestone soils. Grown at an altitude of 200 metres, conditions here are cooler than in most parts of the region. Michael Brajkovich comments that "the wines are particularly exciting and edgy, coming from low-yielding rootstocks and clones that have given some excellent aromas and minerality." Just a few new barrels here keep the oak taste to a minimum and - as ever- this reminds us of Chablis albeit with a bit more opulence. Undoubtedly the best wine from this site so far as the Brajkovich family learn more about the vines each year. Pale lemon colour with a cool nose of wet stone and green fruit. Apples and limes come with a light creaminess and just a hint of spice box from cleverly judged wood. Chalky and impressively savoury on the palate, this is delicate, refined Chardonnay with pithy textural intrigue. Flinty, with a strong yuzu note through to the finish, this site is now really starting to deliver.

Thomas Parker MW, Farr Vintners, September 2022
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.