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Pegasus Bay is an old favourite of ours - we have stocked its Sauvignon-Semillon blend and its Pinot Noir since we set up. Family-owned and operated, it is considered to be one of the finest New Zealand wineries.
We were blown away when we first tasted this Chardonnay in May 2016; we weren't looking for a New Zealand Chardonnay but just had to include it in the portfolio.
The vines are c. 30 years old and of a low-yielding Chardonnay clone which leads to wines of character with good concentration and depth. It is made with Burgundian wine-making methods - grapes hand-picked and gently pressed, wine fermented and aged on the lees in large, mainly old oak barrels (so that the oak effect is subtle) and a spontaneous secondary fermentation before further ageing in bottle.
The resulting wine is Burgundian in style with citrus fruits and nuttiness but the fruit flavours (including lemons and nectarines)and the minerality are more pronounced. It is almost Chablis-esque in its crisp acidity and steely minerality albeit there is also a lovely non-Chablis butteriness. This is a very elegant and complex wine with a very long finish, the sign of a true quality wine - just as we expect from Pegasus Bay!
Update Sept 2018 - this wine is drinking exceptionally well at the moment. The dry minerality is more subdued and the wine very well rounded. Might well be one for the Christmas Dinner table. It's delicious!
You may also want to try Pegasus Bay's stylish Pinot Noir.
This is a very food-friendly wine
"White peach, nectarine, yellow plum and citrus fruits are at the front of the ample flavour and bouquet but they are supported by a complex underlay of grilled nuts, sizzled butter and barbecued corn. Palate entry is deceptively light but the wine expands in the mouth to become rich and concentrated. There is a sinuous spine of minerality and acidity that keep it refined and help draw out the lingering aftertaste."
Winery of the Year 2013 Raymond Chan