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Andre Bondar worked with Nepenthe for seven vintages, so when it came to finding a quality source for Chardonnay in the Adelaide Hills, he knew exactly what he was after. Sourced from a single vineyard in Echunga (450 metres above sea level), the fruit was hand-picked and lightly pressed straight to barrel without sulphur. The juice was then allowed to ferment naturally before being matured in barrel (about 20% new) for nine months. A portion of the barrels were allowed to go through malolactic fermentation, others not - so while it’s a serious glass of Chardonnay in terms of depth, complexity and finesse, it maintains fabulous line, with focus and clarity and freshness.
“Adelaide Hills chardonnay grown at 400 metres. Fermented wild. Matured in French oak, 20% new, for nine months prior to bottling. Some malo, some not. It’s light-ish in some ways but it’s ever-so-attractive. Lemon, nectarine and pear flavours float across the tongue, the texture just-so, the acidity neatly contained within the fruit and yet offering plenty of refreshment.
It looks bright in the glass and feels bright in the mouth. It’s still building, still findings its way in the world, but for length, balance and mouthfeel it has it going on.” 92 points, Campbell Mattinson, winefront.com.au
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