Simply stunning when it comes to price to quality. The team at the FWL drinks this by the bucket load as our house chardonnay.
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This vintage punches well above its weight division with such complex and expertly curated style. Peach, nectarine, lemon and grapefruit aromas with flinty and pithy allure. The palate has a core of intense peach and citrus flavors with driving mineral and stony undertow to the long, fresh finish. Stunning value here. Drink or hold. Screw cap.
Solid, sturdy chardonnay with plenty of weight and concentration. Peppery tannins with grapefruit, stone fruit and a hint of oak. Slightly grippy phenolics together with fruity acidity offer a firm structure.
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.
Kumeu River has long been the spearhead for New Zealand Chardonnay. Back in 1937, The Brajkovich family emigrated to New Zealand from their home country of Croatia. Back at home, they would both grow and produce wine for personal consumption. In 1944 the family purchased a small property with vineyards and started making wine. They started producing single-variety wines of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc, their reputation started to take off in the 80’s for their quality.
Michael Brajkovich then had the vision to produce a Burgundy-influenced style of Chardonnay that featured indigenous yeasts, extended lees ageing, and malo-lactic fermentation. Fast forward to today and Kumeu River has won every accolade under the sun with the critics going crazy for the wines. “Amongst the very best Chardonnay producers in the world” standing “shoulder-to-shoulder with some of the grandest labels from Burgundy” are words uttered by Neal Martin (Vinous).
Kumeu Rivers prices are and have always been incredibly fair. You can essentially drink what is equivalent to Burgundy 1er or Grand Cru quality for around €30 per bottle. Their entry-level Village Chardonnay is one of our favourites for the value picks and we're known to drink it by the buckets upon release. The single-vineyard expressions of Mate's, Hunting Hill, Coddington and Rays Vineyards are all fantastic and we can't recommend them enough.