Monday, August 9, 2010

2007 Scarborough Yellow Label Chardonnay (Sample)

I was impressed to find that Scarborough wine maker, Ian Scarborough, specialises in making Chardonnay (The Hunter being established Semillon and Shiraz territory). My personal favourite of their range (Blue, Yellow and White Labels) is the White Label, which I think resembles a white Burgundy style as closely as any Chardonnay in the Hunter.
The Scarborough Yellow Label Chardonnay is made in a relatively powerful 'Australian' style. It is bright straw/yellow in colour, and smells of lightly caramelised nectarine, subtle fruit salad and a bit of spicy oak.
On the palate, nectarine and melon fruit is balanced with similar levels of spicy French oak. Importantly with a Chardonnay in this style, the oak is nicely integrated, and the fruit does not stray into over-ripe fruit salad territory (fruit salad flavours being my Hunter Chardonnay ‘trigger’ descriptor, for better or for worse).
There is nice creamy texture in the mouth (the wine undergoes malolactic fermentation) and it finishes with decent persistence and a hint of crushed cashew and grapefruit. I would personally recommend drinking the Yellow Label young, unless you don’t mind the oak growing in prominence with age.

In summary, an affordable, versatile wine that does not overpower with oak or sweet fruit, and is nicely balanced with admirable structure.


RRP: $21
ABV: 13%

PS: I recommend a trip to the award-winning Scarborough cellar door if you ever visit the Hunter Valley.

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