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Featured Reviews

Mount Brown North Canterbury Chardonnay 2017

01 October,2018

Riesling is the undisputed king when it comes to white wine in terms of character and quality in North Canterbury, and Sauvignon Blanc is the most-planted white grape in the region. But is has long been argued that Chardonnay deserves to be in the mix. Chardonnay sits fourth in plantings in North Canterbury with Sauvignon Blanc at around 355 ha, Riesling at 260 ha and Pinot Gris at just over 180 ha, with Chardonnay a step back at 70 ha, but it is the impression of very high quality that can be achieved with it that brings it up to the leaders. Pegasus Bay, Greystone and Black Estate are among the outstanding examples for me. Catherine Keith of Mount Brown is aware of these facts, and she has added Chardonnay to her vineyard mix with some of the most promising clones from Riversun nursery: 2,170 clone 1066 vines, making 58%, 1,085 clone 548 (the Corton-Charlemagne clone) comprising 29%, and 465 clone 809 vines making 13.0%. The 2017 Chardonnay is the first harvest from these vines, making just 93 dozen. Here is my review of the wine.


Mount Brown North Canterbury Chardonnay 2017

Chardonnay from New Zealand – Canterbury & Waipara


Bright pale straw-yellow colour with slight green hues, lighter on the rim. The nose is softly fresh with elegantly concentrated aromas of citrus fruit entwined with subtle, balancing nutty oak with a little toast, unfolding some mineral nuances. This has depth to the aromatics. Medium-full bodied, the palate has good weight and presence with restrained flavours of fresh citrus fruit along with subtle notes of aromatic nutty oak. The mouthfeel is softly textured with refreshing acidity providing energy, and the wine carries to a lively finish. This is a gently flavoured, fresh Chardonnay with citrussy fruit and subtle nutty oak on a soft, but mouthwatering palate with some presence. Serve with seafood and poultry over the next 3 years. Chardonnay clones 1066, 548 and 465, the first harvest for Mount Brown, fully barrel-fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 18 months in 30% new oak with no MLF. 17.0+/20 Oct 2018 RRP $19.99

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