Sileni Estates’ 2010 Chardonnays

06-Sep-2011
As with many export-driven New Zealand wineries, Sileni Estates' production is now centred on Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc which forms the majority of the output. But Sileni's heart is in the wines that come from Hawke's Bay. Chardonnay, Merlot with the other red Bordeaux varietals, joined by Syrah and how they express the terroirs of Hawke's Bay is the basis of Sileni's identity. Chief winemaker Grant Edmonds heads a team who are immensely proud of their representation of The Bay, striving for elegance and drinkability rather than making statement wines pushing the envelope, possibly because Grant has been there before. During his tenure as chief winemaker at Villa Maria in the early 1990s, he crafted the first refined Chardonnays there, against the grain, these wines starting the new wave of finesse with the variety, especially for that company. Grant has continued to make stylish Chardonnays over the two decades since, and very successfully so. 2010 was an outstanding year that allowed Sileni to make their second ‘Exceptional Vintage' Chardonnay, and the quality of the vintage can be seen in the other tiers. www.sileni.co.nz

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