99 Points - Stuart McCloskey
The 2014 Chanin Sanford & Benedict Chardonnay has a terrific purity and class. With aromas and flavours of white peach, stone fruits, white flowers and toasted bread it is elegant and balanced, with both richness and freshness - a classic, and beautifully made Chardonnay.
95 Points - Antonio Galloni
Varner's Chardonnay Amphitheater Block is rich, ample and super-expressive. Lemon peel, almonds, chamomile, earthiness, dried apricot and sage meld together effortlessly. The 2013 Amphitheater is a classic Varner Chardonnay built on phenolic intensity and plenty of savory/floral notes that add nuance, while the fruit is pushed a bit into the background.
98 Points - James Suckling
The structure and length of this white highlights its greatness. Full body, yet tight and structured with a superb linear backbone of ripe fruit and fine phenolic tension. Cream, stone, flint and apple. All about refined texture.
96+ Points - Lisa Perrotti-Brown (erobertparker.com) "The 2014 Chardonnay Estate Vineyard reveals very pretty notes of peach blossoms and candied ginger over a core of nectarines, acacia honey, baking bread and marzipan. Medium-bodied with a silken texture and wonderful intensity of yeasty/savory flavors, it has a great frame of freshness and epic length. A beautiful, truly elegant style. "
18 Points - Raymond Chan "Bright straw-yellow colour with some depth, lighter on the edge. The nose is softly full and gently up-front and voluminous with aromas of yellow stonefruits in an amalgam with white peaches and a subtle mealy and nutty overlay. Medium-full bodied, the palate is stylishly up-front with flavours of ripe yellow stonefruits and peaches with nutty and savoury mineral interest. The mouthfeel has fruit richness lending rounded textures and plenty of presence. The wine flows positively along a fine phenolic line leading to a lingering dry finish of stonefruits, nuts and mealy detail. This is an elegantly rich, up-front Chardonnay with ripe stonefruit, nutty and mealy flavours with good weight, a rounded mouthfeel and a dry finish. Match with poultry, pork and veal over the next 3+ years. Hand-picked Kumeu fruit, WBP and indigenous yeast fermented, 75% in tank and 25% in seasoned oak to 13.5% alc., the wine given extended lees aging, undergoing 100% MLF"
95 Points – Bob Campbell "Unusually rich, fleshy Chardonnay in a mouth-filling and accessible style that makes a change from the rather more steely wine I expect under this label. Quite oaky with ginger, ripe peach, tree fruits and a hint of honey. A real surprise."
95-97 Points - Robert Parker "The 2014 Chardonnay Ellen Lane Estate exhibits more gravelly, wet pebble notes and loads of uplifted aromatics, including peach, pineapple, orange rind and lemon blossom. It is again a complex style of Chardonnay made from a cold microclimate."
98+ Points - Stuart McCloskey "Robert’s 2010 was one of my standout wines of 2017 however, the 2012’s incisiveness and energy gives it the edge for me, which is quite a thrill. The wine needs decanting and opens beautifully in the glass with a stunningly complex nose. Perhaps the maritime climate of Margaret River has captured the very essence of marine life with oyster shell clearly evident on the nose. There is an incredible purity and laser-like focus without losing sense of presence or weight. I would argue the wine's greatest component is its intellect and sense of balance which I rarely come across outside of (great) Burgundy. This is magnificent and a benchmark to all producers in the great Margaret River. Drinking now to 2022. "