Fruit for the 2016 Coonawarra Chardonnay is predominately from the Williams Vineyard located approximately 5 minutes, by tractor, north of Parker Coonawarra Estate's Abbey vineyard, with the balance sourced from a single vineyard on V&A Lane.
A dry winter and warm spring in 2015 led to an early '16 vintage in Coonawarra with all fruit being crushed by March 31st. Following harvest the fruit was pressed off skins straight away before a third of the blend was transferred to new French oak Barriques. 33% of these barrels went through malolactic fermentation before the alcohol ferment to tighten the structure of the wine and add complexity.
The remainder of the blend was fermented in stainless steel tanks to enhance freshness and vibrancy, before being blended with the oak portion to create the 2016 Coonawarra Chardonnay.
90 POINTS - HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION
Mid-straw gold and bright; ginger spice on white stone fruit, lemon zest, this is quite frisky not complicated though. Neat acidity tidies the palate.
94 POINTS - KIM BREBACH
It’s good to start with a gorgeous wine, a pitch perfect chardy that disapperared so fast I hardly got a couple of glasses of it. Nectarines wrapped in a creamy envelope of almonds, long and vibrant and polished with a hint of lees complexity. Perfect now and for the next year of two.
2015 COONAWARRA SERIES CHARDONNAY REVIEWS
95 POINTS - KIM BREBACH
Phil Lehmann uses ‘reverse fermentation’ with his Chardonnays, where the malolactic fermentation which converts hard malic acid into softer lactic acid precedes the usual fermentation that converts sugar to alcohol. The resulting wine is full of bright energy and purity, with terrific fruit expression and a lot of fine polish. The French oak takes a back seat, the wine is seamless and perfectly judged and an absolute joy to drink. 95 points. BUY.
93 POINTS - TONY KEYS
Classic chardonnay nose. The wine sits full at the beginning of its journey but reveals elegance as it travels. It ends on the fuller side but is not overblown. Let’s say it’s an attractive lass (or lad) with curves. 93 points and very good value at $24.
90 POINTS - HUON HOOKE
Bright, light yellow hue and an inviting bouquet of lemon, citrus and honey, the palate soft and fruity and not too dry, with grapey appeal and a degree of complexity..
90 POINTS - JAMES HALLIDAY
Peach, apple, pear and citrus flavours give this both plenty of flavour and a deal of zesty/tangy drive. Oak lends a hand but keeps its influence light.