97 Points - James Halliday "From the home vineyard at Forest Grove planted '04, hand-picked, whole bunch-pressed, fermented in French oak (50% new), mlf, matured for 18 months, plus a further 24 months in bottle. I'll bet every vine receives personal attention; as each year passes, the style of the Flowstone wines becomes more clearly marked. Here it is the depth and texture of the fruit, mlf and oak in measured support for each other that establishes the special quality the wine has (not to mention 2 years cellar maturation)."
97 Points - Stuart McCloskey “Reductive with aromas still very much in development. That said, this impeccably made wine is centred around textural elegance, satiny structure, mid-palate depth and an effortless sense of cohesion. Decanting for a short while is essential as the oxygenation takes it from the ordinary to immensely appealing. Layer upon layer of fruit and white flowers harmonises beautifully with oatmeal and a beautiful vein of minerality. This is more tensile, finer than many, which adds an intellectual quality found with high-quality Burgundy. This is a superb Chardonnay from one of New Zealand's leading producers. I recommend a drinking window from now to 2025 but would not be surprised to this peak beyond 10 years.. Sampled in Zalto Bordeaux glassware and comes highly recommended”.
99 points - Stuart McCloskey "Almost a repeat of my introduction from the 2013 vintage - “In short, this is one of the most astonishing Chardonnays which I have enjoyed for many years”, however the 2014 just eclipses the stunning 2013. A difficult wine to describe as superlatives do little, if any justice. Incredibly graceful, almost a weightless elegance, feminine, magnificently detailed bouquet which expresses minerality like no other US chardonnay. The palate is developing all the time with a core of minerality. Presently, this is a wine that is all about finesse and elegance, as flavours will develop with a little more bottle age. Utterly magnificent! (Please decant)."
97++ Points - Stuart McCloskey “Sourced from the very first planting of Chardonnay in the Adelaide Hills and continues to be revered as one of Australia's greatest Chardonnays. The current bottle price of $115.00 supports its domestic reputation. Struck match fades with a few minutes of aeration to reveal a whole spectrum of aromas ranging from confit lemon, sea spray, freshly squeezed lemon and lime, lots of minerality and a background of beeswax. The palate is flawless, everlasting with the weight and crystalline delineation of a Grand Cru Burgundy. It’s certainly not shy in coming forward but does offer enough restraint not to be too overwhelming. There’s a lovely satin texture with a killer line of acidity running through its core. More savoury than fruity with white toast, cashew and creamy chalkiness / oiliness which coats the palate. Harmonious and the little bottle age has done it wonders. Clearly, we should seriously re-consider our price! Drink now through to 2030. Served with Zalto Bordeaux glassware.”
95 Points - William Kelley (robertparker.com) "From one of the oldest vineyards in the Santa Maria Valley, Paul Lato’s superb 2016 Chardonnay le Souvenir Sierra Madre Vineyard reveals attractive aromas of yellow orchard fruit, citrus zest, peach and honeycomb. On the palate, it’s medium to full-bodied, with more textural glossiness than the Belle de Jour, underpinned by bright acids and concluding with an intense, chalky finish. This is quite structurally tight-knit right now and will need a couple of years in the cellar to blossom."
18+ Points – Raymond Chan "Bright straw-yellow colour with pale green hues on edge, this has a softly fresh and full nose of concentrated, pure lime juices, white stonefruits and acacia florals, with richness and density. Dry to taste, the palate has elevated acidity providing raciness and zesty lime and apple-like flavours on a well-weighted palate with body, presence and concentration. The wine has very fine, smooth textures enlivened by the acidity which carries through to a sustained finish showing pure citrus fruit nuances. This should age well."
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96 Points - James Halliday "From a single vineyard in Karridale, the southernmost and coolest part of Margaret River; hand-picked, whole bunch-pressed, fermented in French oak (15% new), with natural mlf; 11 months in oak with occasional lees stirring; after bottling cellared for 30 months prior to release. Still pale, bright straw-green; the bouquet has a nutty complexity to the core of pink grapefruit, the palate a bright replay of the bouquet except for the racy, minerally acidity."
94 Points - Jeb Dunnuck (erobertparker.com) "Another sensational effort for these two brothers, the 2014 Chardonnay Home Block Spring Ridge Vineyard reveals more minerality, as well as medium to full-bodied richness, terrific purity and classic, tropical aromas and flavors. Expansive, gorgeously textured and balanced, drink this beauty over the coming 5-7 years."
The 2017 Roussanne Estate is quite delicate in this vintage. In 2017, the Estate has 12% Chardonnay, which adds complexity and nuance, while also pushing some of the Roussanne character into the background. Even so, it is a very pretty wine. Drink it over the next few years.
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97 Points - James Halliday "The 'lucky' 7th vintage, whole-bunch pressed, fermented in French barriques (50% new), 100% mlf, matured for 18 months. The brilliant straw-green hue says there's something special here, for it's incredibly detailed, precise and balanced, the three spears of perfect varietal fruit, high quality oak and acidity all unsheathed, but not required to be thrown. Only 88 dozen made."
95 Points - Campbell Mattinson "Single vineyard chardonnay from the southern reaches of the region. Stunning chardonnay. Not so much idiosyncratic as likely to polarise. It’s rich with custardy lactose character, combined with honeysuckle and toffee apples, though there’s also white peach, flint, woodsmoke and citrus. It’s rich and cutting at once, matchsticky and seamless too. It’s quite outstanding, so long as you’re into this kind of thing."