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New Customers Save $30 off $100+* with code JULYNEW30
New Customers Save $30* with code JULYNEW30
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Muddy Water Chardonnay Waipara 1999
Waipara has recently been granted separate appellation status by the New Zealand Wine Institute because of its very special mesoclimate.
The climate is typified by hot dry summers and long sunny autumns leading to the production of intensely flavoured ripe grapes.
Several soil types are found in the area- Muddy Water has loam over calcarious clay on limestone bedrock.
The company is family owned and headed by Michael and Jane East with the philosophy that only premium wines will be produced.
All the wine is of reserve standard due to very low cropping levels and intense canopy management. All the grapes are hand picked and estate grown. Careful extraction of the juice follows, with fastidious attention to detail during the whole of the vinification process.
At the southern end of the North Island about an hour drive from New Zealand’s capital city of Wellington, Wairarapa’s producers are mainly small-scale, lifestyle winemakers. The region holds less than 3% of the country’s acreage under vine but nearly one tenth of its winemakers.
Considering topography, soil and climate, Wairarapa is similar to Marlborough except that it is better at producing Pinot noir. Martinborough is a main subregion.
One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.
In the Glass
When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.
Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.
Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.