2010 Te Whare Ra (TWR) Chardonnay Marlborough New Zealand

SKU #1089052

Te Whare Ra is a small, organic, family-run winery in Marlborough's Wairau Valley that we loved so much that we decided to import them directly! That means more bang for your buck. Their Chardonnay is very Burgundian in weight and texture. The palate is packed with orchard and stone fruits, with beautiful texture, richness and perfect balance. The oak is very well integrated and leads into spicy but elegant finish. Stunningly complex. 345 cases made. Winemaker's notes: "The vines on our estate are now 32 years old. The parcels for the 2010 vintage were fermented entirely in French oak, large format (600lt) barrels (30% new.) The wine went 100% through malo and spent 10 months on the lees for added texture and complexity. Very enjoyable now but will also benifit from 5-7 years careful cellaring."

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Price: $24.99
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Staff Image By: Chiara Shannon | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/18/2012 | Send Email
In our recent blind international Chardonnay tasting, this won my favor over some serious competition. It possesses the minerality, complexity, and focus of Burgundy, but the clean, sparkling fruit of the new world, yet I couldn't peg it as either because it seamlessly wove elements of both in a dynamic style all to its own. Notes of kerosene and nutty lees emerge alongside coconut, buttered toast, and Meyer lemon in manner that is familiar, yet wildly complex at the same time. It's impeccably balanced, elegantly strucutured, and persistent, with some real distinctive character. Whether you're an acid-hound or butter-fiend, you will find a much to appreciate here, and it's priced well within reach.

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- It's hard to believe that up until about 30 years ago, this extremely popular varietal hid behind the veil of geographical names like Chablis and Puligny-Montrachet. Now grown all over the world and bottled by its varietal name, Chardonnay has achieved a level of branding unlike any other wine. Surprisingly, though, what you get when you buy Chardonnay can differ greatly from country to country and even within one country, depending on the climate where it's grown and how it is vinified and aged. From fresh, crisp and minerally with apple and lemon notes to rich and buttery with tropical fruit overtones, Chardonnay runs the gamut. In France's Burgundy, Chardonnay is the source of the prized wines of Chablis, Corton-Charlemagne, Mâcon, Meursault and Montrachet. It also the foundation of exceptional Champagne, where it is blended with Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier or vinified on its own into Blanc de Blancs. It is also extremely popular in California, and is gaining popularity in Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Spain and South Africa.

New Zealand

- New Zealand is an extremely diverse wine-growing nation. The long history of producing wine started in the 1830s with wineries such as Mission Estate (1850) and Te Mata Estate (1896) still producing wine today. The two islands hold a multitude of different growing climates ranging from warmer areas such as Hawke’s Bay to very cool regions such as Waitaki, and Awatere. Most regions are defined as Maritime with the exception being Central Otago that has a moderate Continental climate with the high elevation creating dramatic diurnal swings in temperature. The plethora of grapes grown in New Zealand reflects this diverse microclimate make up. Everything has a place here, Bordeaux varietals and Syrah in Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay and Pinot in Nelson, Pinot Noir and Riesling in Central Otago , aromatic whites in Waipara and pretty much everything you can imagine in Marlborough. New Zealand is also one of the “greenest” wine producing nations on earth (94% of wine certified sustainable in 2013) with a strong focus on organic and Biodynamic farming.