Tuesday, 15 March 2011

A New Zealand White that's not Sauvignon Blanc

Having written quite a few reviews on New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, most people could be led to believe that this is the only grape they grow, which is not the case. With the climate being much cooler than their Australian neighbours, they don't do so well with growing the likes of Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. They do grow with great success Pinot Noir, Merlot and Chardonnay, producing some absolutely stunning examples of these wines.

I know this isn't the right bottle!
Having reviewed Villa Maria’s Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc, I thought I would also review there Private Bin East Coast Chardonnay 2008, and the fact that a friend bought a bottle with them when they came to dinner the other week made it an ideal opportunity. The wine itself has been allowed to go through Malolactic fermentation, and certain parcels of the blend have also received some oak ageing, to add some depth and complexity to it.

On pouring the wine, it had a bright lemony gold colour with reasonably pronounced youthful aromas of Peaches, Pears and strangely enough, wet wool, which isn’t as bad as it sounds. On the palate you got the fruit coming through with eucalyptus/medicinal flavours following. It had a good level of acidity that worked very well with flavours making it a well balanced wine with just the right level of oak.

This was not a bad wine, it was well balanced, not over oaked, with a short length of flavour making it an enjoyable drink, but would I recommend it? If you like your new world Chardonnays then you’d enjoy this, but personally and for the price I’d rather go for their Sauvignon Blanc.

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