What’s in the glass tonight June 18th

Mission Estate HB Chardonnay 2008

From the cellar: Mission Estate Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2008 – $

The Mission Estate in the Hawkes Bay claims to be one of the oldest vineyards in New Zealand. It was established as a Marist Community in 1851, with vines planted in 1855 for producing sacrament wine. It is one of the Bay’s volume producers, and is well represented on the supermarket shelves. Don’t know if it is still held by the Church.

The wine I am having tonight – the bottom tier ‘estate’ label – is often on special in the low $ teens. It’s generally a good daily drop, so if I see it heavily reduced I often will buy a few bottles for the Pool Room. This is one of those…

…Pale gold. A waft of phenolics, but this dissipated quickly. Usual suspects of peach and apricot notes on the nose. To taste it is mouthfilling and rich, with apricots again; not too heavy, oaky, and with vanilla. It’s a mid-weight wine, and is showing the age. The years add interesting depth and character. But it is as mature as I should let it get – past this date the acid and fruit would increasingly give way to the oak which would then show through as bitterness.

Not everyone’s choice, but I like it ok. The label could do with a birthday, and channel the whole Bordeaux histoire thing. 3.

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