Saturday, February 6, 2010

2008 Hope Estate Chardonnay - $18

Despite the pedigree of a wine like Tyrrell’s Vat 47, good chardonnay and the Hunter Valley is not an obvious association. Chardonnay finds its purest expression in the cool climate of Burgundy, and in Australia in a moderate climate like the Margaret River, and a cooler climate like the Yarra Valley. The Hunter is a hot, humid region that in some ways shouldn't produce quality wine and yet consistently produce wonderful, age worthy Shiraz, the world’s best Semillon, and perhaps most surprisingly, some decent Chardonnay.

The wine already has a lovely, deep golden colour and I’d suggest is a chardonnay to be enjoyed in the next couple of years. For a chardonnay it has quite a fruity nose, with nectarine, some citrus notes, and interestingly a hint of butterscotch. Oak is barely noticeable and well integrated. On the palate it has nice fruit sweetness, with good line and focus through the mid palate before finishing with some sour grapefruit flavours. Enjoyable chardonnay in the early drinking style, with enough quality and complexity to put it above plenty of other sub $20 chardonnays you’ll find.


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