Region: Hunter Valley
Background: Pioneer Hunter Valley winemaker, Alexander Munro was winemaker, Rhys Eather’s great-great-grandfather and these true reserve wines are released only in years that reflect the status of the label. The 2000 vintage was the Trophy winner at the 2000 Hunter Valley Wine Show for current vintage Chardonnay.
Fruit source: The old-vine ‘Casuarina’ Vineyard located on Hermitage Road in Pokolbin was again the Chardonnay source for the 2016 ’Alexander Munro’ Chardonnay, and has been consistently used since 2007. This vineyard is managed by Ken Braye.
Fermentation: Handpicked fruit was whole bunch pressed and barrel fermented in French oak hogsheads of which close to 40% were new.
Maturation: After 12 months maturation and no malolactic fermentation allowed, we bottled in February 2017 under screwcap.
Winemaker’s comments: When it comes to weather, 2016 was a vast improvement on 2015 and there were only minor disruptions with rain. 2016 white wines on a whole tend to be along the lines of what are termed ‘classic’ styles with good flavour and great acid structures.
Tasting note: A beautiful chardonnay aroma of oatmeal, peach and rockmelon. The palate has pure chardonnay fruit characters, but still tight and focused with great length of flavour. The French oak plays an important role on both the nose and palate, but never dominates the pristine fruit.
Cellaring estimate: Medium term. 5—10 years.
Suggested food match: White meats such as chicken, pork, fuller flavoured fish including Ocean Trout and Salmon.