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 2015 ’Alexander Munro’ Chardonnay. 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 50% were new.
Maturation: After 12 months maturation and no malolactic fermentation allowed, we bottled in February 2016 under screwcap.
Winemaker’s comments: The start of vintage was marred by rain which caused some disease issues in some Hunter Valley vineyards. The old-vine ‘Casuarina’ vineyard overcame any issues and aided by the cooler weather gave us very high quality Chardonnay fruit, albeit, a very small quantity.
Tasting note: In the glass, it is pale straw in colour with tinges of green. An intense white peach and nectarine nose also has notes of well integrated spicy; toasty oak. The palate is generous in flavour, but remains refined with mouth-watering acidity, that gives it line, length, structure and poise. The length of flavour is extremely long. We said the 2014 was great, but it will be eclipsed by this wine.
Cellaring estimate: Medium term. 5—10 years.
Suggested food match: White meats such as chicken, pork, fuller flavoured fish including Ocean Trout and Salmon.