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Monday, 23 April 2012

Triple Shot: Hunter Valley 2010 Chardonnay

Hunter Valley Chardonnay is a bit of an unknown for me, so what better way to learn than to have a look at a few, side-by-side?  When I think of the Hunter I immediately think of Semillon and Shiraz, in whites and reds respectively.  So maybe the variety has some way to go if someone with my elevated levels of thirst wouldn't necessarily associate the region and variety together.  

Drayton's Family Vineyard Reserve 2010
Barrel Ferment character immediately apparent, toasty peach and grapefruit in support.  In the mouth the wine is textural, with stonefruit and citrus further in the mix - a hint of lemon sherbet for a little extra excitement.  Fair spike of acid on the finish, sticks out a little like a sore thumb at this current juncture.  Ticks the right boxes, plenty of interest - over time the fruit is drawn out a little more, with the lemon sherbet more pronounced.  90+ - Good.

Price: $?
Closure: Screwcap

Margan Limited Release White Label 2010
A little austere on approach, faint citrus and almon, a hint of peach - rather clean.  On entry, citrus presents itself - but that word again: clean.  Balanced, but quite tight and closed, lacking somewhat in true Chardonnay character for me.  Finishes with some mineral and stonefruit, and the finish shows length.  Too closed to reveal anything.  Would love to see where it goes.  87/88+ - Good.

Price: $30
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap

Tower Estate Chardonnay 2010
Better.  Clean again on approach, with pronounced citrus profile.  Suggestion of barrel ferment employed.  Gentle, rounded, texural in the mouth.  A hint of mineral, toasty feel to things, nougat oak - expensive oak.  Rich, yet reserved.  Finish is moderate.  Quality is there, but again it's a little subdued at this stage.  A step up, but keen to see how it would develop.  91+ - Very Good 

Price: $30
Alcohol: 13%
Closure: Screwcap

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