2014 Kumeu River "Hunting Hill Vineyard" Chardonnay Kumeu

SKU #1305883 97 points Sam Kim

 The most elegant of the single vineyard chardonnays by Kumeu River, with its Chevalier-Montrachet-like taut mouthfeel and refinement, the bouquet exhibits white stone fruit, lemon peel, green rockmelon and floral with nuances of cashew and oatmeal. The palate is delicate yet concentrated and persistent, and shows wonderful fruit purity as well as stylish complexity. The finish is awesome: flowing, linear and exceptionally long. At its best: 2017 to 2027.  (4/2016)

96 points Bob Campbell

 Crisp, high energy Chardonnay with citrus, lemon, wet stone mineral, cashew nut, bran biscuit and spicy oak. 25% new oak - deliberately less toasty. Gives a nod in the direction Burgundy. Fresh and lingering finish. Very pure wine with subtle power.  (4/2016)

96 points James Suckling

 This vineyard sits above Mate's Vineyard and has a combination of ripeness with vibrant acid-fuelled energy. The nose heads into some quite exotic territory, showing fine limes and lemon zest, floral and perfumed ethereal aromas and some richer orange fruits. The palate's succulent and curvaceous; it really offers fleshy impact on first sip and then whips into a taut, long finish. Clever wine from a great site.  (12/2016)

94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2014 Hunting Hill Chardonnay has a white peach, spiced apple and honeyed pear nose with hints of ginger, brioche and almonds. Medium-bodied, the silken textured palate gives layer upon layer of stone fruit and savoury flavors plus excellent persistence. (LPB)  (12/2015)

92 points Vinous

 Pale, bright yellow. A high-toned gingery spice note lifts aromas of lemon, green apple, white peach and stony minerality. Rich, tactile and ripe, conveying more early sweetness and pliancy of texture than the comparatively austere 2014 Maté's bottling. Nicely concentrated, juicy and long on personality. Offers great early appeal but will age. This wine is sometimes tighter on release than the Maté's but not this year. I love its balance of sweetness and acidity. (ST)  (5/2016)

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Price: $39.99
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Staff Image By: Anthony Gittings | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/13/2017 | Send Email
This a beautiful Chardonnay full of bright lemon, macadamia nuts and a touch of melon. The acid is perfectly balanced and offers up loads of freshness. A long lasting finish, offers fresh stone fruit and wonderful minerality.

Staff Image By: Christina Stanley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/13/2017 | Send Email
This is a wonderful Chardonnay from the Kumeu River region of South Africa, in a light, Burgundian style. The wine is definitely mineral driven, but is characterized by a creamy and soft texture. The Kumeu River "Hunting Hill" is created from grapes grown on the single vineyard site, which was planted in 1982 on a slope with clay soils. Hunting Hill's proximity to the Tasman sea offers a temperate and cool climate for Chardonnay maturation, and the result is elegant and flavorful.

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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.