Kumeu River Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay 2020
The 2020 vintage for Mate’s Vineyard was truly remarkable. They have seen some fine wines from this vineyard in the last 30 years but 2020 is the pinnacle of what they have achieved so far. Mate’s Vineyard is always the last site we pick each year. In 2020 the grapes certainly had the distinctive Mendoza millerandage, giving many small berries along with the normal sized ones, and as a result a wonderfully concentrated palate texture and fruit richness. Although still somewhat shy on the nose, with bottle age the full palette of complex aromas and bouquet of this wonderful wine will be gradually and seductively revealed. Pairs well with seafood, pasta, chicken, and risotto.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Maté’s is Kumeu’s home vineyard block of vines, located just outside Auckland in the North Island. Now over 30 years old, the fruit is reaching a new level of complexity. Riper than previous vintages but still delicate and floral, this bottling expresses stone fruit, citrus, jasmine and cream aromas. The palate is still youthful and understated, but there’s a lifted line of acidity, structure and length that all suggest the best is yet to come.
Rich, showing appealing ripeness to the Fuji apple, white peach, lemon curd and spice flavors, with firm acidity and elegant details of candied ginger peel on the finish. Drink now
Founded in 1944 by Mick Brajkovich, wife Katé and son Maté, Kumeu River was one of the early pioneers in Auckland, New Zealand, that helped to establish its reputation as a world-class wine region. Still family owned and run, Kumeu River continues to pioneer new frontiers: winemaker Michael Brajkovich became New Zealand’s first member of the prestigious Institute of Masters of Wine, London, they have been testing and championing screw cap closures for close to 20 years and the winery has gone on to become the globally recognized benchmark for non-Burgundy produced Chardonnay. All Kumeu River wines are hand-harvested, whole bunch pressed and demonstrate exclusive use of indigenous yeast fermentation.
The Chardonnays of Kumeu River have gained a strong foothold within the international market, continuously and consistently receiving outstanding accolades. The winery is a globally recognized benchmark for age-worthy Chardonnay outside of Burgundy.
Grape-growers in the local subregions of Clevedon, Matakana and Waiheke Island, focusing on vineyard techniques to maximize quality, are producing very fine Bordeaux Blends from local grapes. Auckland is also an industrial area where winemakers can produce quality wines based on sourced grapes from neighboring regions.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it is grown and how it is made. While it tends to flourish in most environments, Chardonnay from its Burgundian homeland produces some of the most remarkable and longest lived examples. California produces both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines. Somm Secret—The Burgundian subregion of Chablis, while typically using older oak barrels, produces a bright style similar to the unoaked style. Anyone who doesn't like oaky Chardonnay would likely enjoy Chablis.