Region: Hunter Valley
Background:‘Indie’ is a label used for non mainstream or ‘out there’ varieties and blends from the Hunter Valley. Marsanne and Roussanne both originate and flourish in France’s Rhone Valley but do exceptionally well in the Hunter as well.
Fruit source:Both the Marsanne and Roussanne are grown on the Kindred family’s, ‘Lochleven’ Estate on Palmers Lane. The Roussanne a more recent addition..
Fermentation: Both varieties were hand harvested then fermented separately in French oak, 20% was new.
Maturation: Both parcels were kept separate and blended after 8 months of maturation.
Winemaker’s comments: 2014 was a winemaker’s dream with perfect growing and ripening conditions. Being heralded as the ‘vintage of the century’ by some old Hunter identities. Yields were also up but quality was never in question.
Tasting notes: A light yellow with green tinges in colour, the nose is aromatic with Honeydew Melon, Pear and Rockmelon aromas. The palate is full in flavour and weight but kept fresh and interesting by precision acidity.
Cellaring estimate: Medium term (8+ years).
Suggested food match: Full flavoured seafood.
What the experts say:
“A very complex white blend that is full-bodied and rich with buttered toast, stone-fruit aromas and much more. There’s intensity and focus, while crisp acidity holds it all together. A generous dry white.”
93 Points – Huon Hooke – Wine Magazine ‘Top 100 New Releases’ June/July 2015
“Marsanne and roussanne are two French-origin grape varieties that in their homeland produce the white wines of St Joseph, Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitage appellations in the northern Rhone Valley. A vintage at Chapoutier winery gave Meerea Park winemaker Rhys Eather liking for Marsanne-roussanne blends and here he has produced one from the 2014 Hunter vintage. It shines light gold in the glass and has musk aromas. Quince flavour features on the front of the palate and lychee, orange peel and cinnamon characters on the middle palate. The finish has slatey acidity.”
4 ½ stars – John Lewis – Newcastle Herald – 21st March 2014
Both parcels from the mature Lochleven Vineyard; hand-picked, each fermented separately in French oak (20% new). A complex matrix is presented, and given its genealogy, it should be given a few years to point to its future. The only reservation is that it starts with a big base (as does its maker).
Rated 92. James Halliday – 2016 Australian Wine Companion