Chardonnay and Sparkling Wine – New Release

Reviewed: 25th July 2012


Sandalford – Chardonnay – Prendiville – 2011 (18 – 18.5). Another serious wine. Viscous, textured, balanced and almost chewy. The medium toast oak adds layers of complexity, along with subtle smoke and spice characters. Peach, stonefruit and minerals are the primary fruit characters and the wine builds complexity and depth with air. Superb!

Flametree – Chardonnay – S.R.S. (Wallcliffe) – 2012 (18.3). This is a superb wine, with high quality fruit and excellent winemaking. There is stonefruit, pineapple and citrus characters on both the nose and the palate. The oak is a little more noticeable, but is sympathetic to the fruit. This is a richer style that has immediate appeal, though the wine will continue to improve for a few years.

Cherubino – Chardonnay – Margaret River – 2012 (18+). Peach and almond on both the nose and palate, with hints of lemon and tropical fruit. A viscous, crafted wine that combines finesse with drinkability. The length of fruit flavours on the finish is a highlight, and the mouth-feel and balance makes this irresistible. The oak only adds to the package. (Drink this while waiting for the wine from the Porongorups).

Thompson Estate – Chardonnay – 2011 (18). This wine has potential, hinting at floral fruit and peachy stone fruit. The acid here is fresh and keen, while the fruit builds in the mouth. This actually has quite rich fruit, though it just needs time to express itself. The silky oak adds texture rather than overt flavours and the length is outstanding. Harks back to Leeuwin Estate chardonnays of old.

Ferngrove – Chardonnay – 2012 (17.8). Subtle fruit on the nose. The palate is rich, viscous, complex and very long. The oak is present, but sits well with the finely crafted fruit. This is a wine of quality and shows sophisticated winemaking, which confers a lovely mouth-feel. The bitter almond astringency on the finish adds life.

Seppelts – Chardonnay – Drumborg – 2008 (17.7). Lovely, complex nose that has depth and interest. There is lemon and melon fruit notes. Cashew nut, white peach and nectarine on both the nose and palate. Developing, the oak fleshes out the finish. Not as lean as the “modern” style, though probably the best drinking wine today. (The 2011 is the current release).

Killerby – Chardonnay – 2012 (17.6). Clean, fresh and modern. The palate has presence, with quality fruit and excellent oak. Everything is in place, though it is quite lean now and needs a few years to flesh out.

Cherubino – Chardonnay – Porongurup – 2012 (17.5/18+). Superb fruit, but in a package that is so tight and restrained that the acidity is quite piercing. Needs time or air to open up and allow the fruit to develop. This is pure and linear, with wonderful balanced and subtle fruit. Set up for a long future, this may well be the best wine here.

Grant Burge – Pinot Noir/Chardonnay – NV (16.9). Quite developed nose and palate. The fruit here is quite rich, courtesy of the pinot dominant blend. A well made wine that has good length, nice acidity and reasonable complexity making for a convincing drink.

Angove – Chardonnay – Organic – 2012 (17). Quite a neutral wine that builds in the mouth. Shows lemony fruit that is fine, subtle and delicate. Refined, this really started to grow on me. Excellent value.