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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Maté’s Vineyard, Kumeu – 2020

jamessuckling.com
100 Points

This is such impressive chardonnay in terms of power and complexity, delivering so much with such poise. Aromas of lemons and peaches intersect with lightly spicy oak and brioche on the nose. The palate drops mouth-filling flavors of peach and lemon and winds tight, before exploding long on the finish with a long, nutty afterglow. Perfect chardonnay.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Coddington, Kumeu — 2020

jamessuckling.com
97 Points

This is a wine of real purity and elegance with fresh sliced peaches and lemons, as well as some light pastry notes. The palate is fine, unwaveringly long and pure with enlivening acidity through the finish. Stunning.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu — 2020

jamessuckling.com
96 Points

A complex chardonnay with yellow citrus, as well as lemon-curd and creamy tones. Light hazelnut, too. The palate has such all-encompassing, fresh peachy flavors and builds impressively through the long, full finish.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2020

jamessuckling.com
95 Points

Intense and complex chardonnay with lemons and peaches, as well as pastry and fresh cream. The palate is stacked with ripe-peach flavor and fresher, citrus tones and has complex, layered texture. Classy wine.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Rays Road, Hawkes Bay — 2020

jamessuckling.com
95 Points

This is a fuller style from Hawke’s Bay and quite different from the rest of the Kumeu range of chardonnays. Bold, ripe peaches dominate the nose and palate. The texture is impressively silky and smooth. Very fleshy and complete. Impressive.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Village, Kumeu – 2020

jamessuckling.com
91 Points

As always, this has a selection of riper fruit, in the more tropical spectrum of melon and peach. It retains purity well. The palate holds such impressive concentration and hits the mark of freshness. A very strong release, representing real value.

James Suckling, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Maté’s Vineyard, Kumeu – 2020

Vinous
97 Points

This appears to have gone on a yoga retreat in 2020: not only is its usual powerful self, but it's remarkably zen too, exuding a sense of calmness. It is full-bodied, round and offers fruit ripeness, but the propensity of the Mendoza clone to hen-and-chicks means that it retains a sense of nerve, with powerful citrusy acidity providing the needle that pulls a tight thread through this wine's core. The 2020 is still far too young, and it is aromatically shy, but even in its full mature glory, it won't exhibit aromatic fireworks – nor should it. This is Chardonnay...

Rebecca Gibb, July 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu — 2020

Vinous
95 Points

Possibly the most complete Hunting Hill Chardonnay I've tasted in youth, the 2020 provides a harmonious, melt-in-your-mouth impression. It has breadth and concentration but retains a sense of elegance on the midpalate before finishing with precision and length. Yes, there's a little bit of flint character too, but then Hunting Hill is known to be reductive; give it time. Like Forrest Gump, it runs through a finish line and keeps on going effortlessly. There's no box of chocolates here, though; it's all white nectarine, citrus, white flowers and a touch of smoked nuts.

Rebecca Gibb, July 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Coddington, Kumeu — 2020

Vinous
93 Points

Another typically weighty expression from Kumeu's Coddington vineyard, the 2020 Chardonnay Coddington fills the midpalate with its density and breadth. It is a wine of clarity, the oak-derived smoky, nutty notes providing a savory layer over nectarine and lemon meringue. However, this is not a wine that needs multiple flavor descriptors; it's a wine of texture. Expect the smooth, mellow mouthfeel to be followed up with lovely precision and sinew on the lengthy, smoky finish.

Rebecca Gibb, July 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2020

Vinous
91 Points

There's a sense of calm to the 2020 Chardonnay Estate, a blend of six different sites. It is mellow, offering a plump cushion of Chardonnay goodness on the midpalate but not becoming heavy nor opulent, its youthful edge and fresh acidity tying it together into a precise finish. It offers classic subtle Chardonnay characters of Golden Delicious apple, white nectarine, and a mere whiff of oak-derived smokiness. Well-constructed, satisfying, and elegant.

Rebecca Gibb, July 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Village, Kumeu – 2020

JancisRobinson.com
16.5 Points

Surprisingly rich nose. Fine, appetizing, crisp palate with just a little chewiness still evident at this point. There's a suggestion of sweet grapefruit juice. Really clean, fresh and long.

Jancis Robinson, June 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Coddington, Kumeu — 2020

JancisRobinson.com
16.5+ Points

Pale greenish straw colour. Broad, rather floral nose with some light chewiness on the end. Hint of lemon peel on the finish. Not the most intense Kumeu Chardonnay but very 'pleasant' for now! It will surely bloom in bottle.

Jancis Robinson, June 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2020

JancisRobinson.com
17 Points

Lightly but not excessively reductive on the nose. Already quite expansive on the nose with beautiful impact on the palate: citrus, blossom and really neat acidity without much astringency. Elegant and racy – almost lightweight on the mid palate and then it is impressively persistent. A thorough delight already.

Jancis Robinson, June 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu — 2020

JancisRobinson.com
17++ Points

Really nervy nose. Truly burgundian, if one is allowed to say this. Great fruit and great tension. Just the job and amazingly vibrant and persistent on the finish. You could drink this already but it will clearly last really well – though winemaker Michael Brajkovich is consistently cautious with his suggested drinking windows; 'will improve with bottle age for four to six years'. A hint of Puligny here.

Jancis Robinson, June 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Maté’s Vineyard, Kumeu – 2020

JancisRobinson.com
17.5 Points

Pale gold. Quite an opulent nose. I must say the nose made me think involuntarily of some Corton-Charlemagnes. Really precise and mealy with perfect balance. You could already enjoy it but it will surely become even more complex in bottle. Long and satisfying, a wine designed to soothe sore throats. Quite a triumph; easy to see why it's the most expensive in this range.

Jancis Robinson, June 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Coddington, Kumeu – 2019

Wine Enthusiast
95 Points - Editors' Choice

From a low-yielding single vine-yard, this white opens with smoke and flinty mineral notes weaving between concentrated yet fresh fruit. The palate is lighter than expected thanks to a line of crystalline acidity and a filigree texture. It has exceptional structure and neatly integrated oak that lets the layers of flavor shine.

Christina Pickard, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu – 2019

Wine Enthusiast
93 Points

This wine opens with delicate melon, peach and citrus notes, backed by honeysuckle and fresh oats. The palate shows the restraint and poise for which this label is known. It crackles with acidity and a talc-like texture, the pure fruit backed by brioche oak characteristics. Harmonious, varietal and expressive of place, this is a polished bottling for drinking now.

Christina Pickard, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Maté’s Vineyard, Kumeu – 2019

Wine Enthusiast
93 Points

This wine opens with heady aromas of grapefruit, lemon, and peach, backed by coconut-and-vanilla oak and salted-nut characteristics. The generous palate is creamy and toasty but it never loses the precision or fruit purity. Long, layered, and fresh, this wine could be drunk now but will play its best hand in the years to come.

Christina Pickard, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu – 2019

Wine Enthusiast
92 Points

“Kumeu’s estate Chard walks a tightrope of textural richness and delicate fruit. Along with the barrel influence, it exudes notes of melon, citrus, florals and damp, salty undertones like seashells at high tide. In the mouth, bright fruit and a crunch of acidity balance a slippery texture and more oak on the finish.

Christina Pickard, August 2021
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Kumeu River
Chardonnay, Maté’s Vineyard, Kumeu – 2019

The Wine Advocate
96 Points

Scents of hazelnut, mocha and lime-custard crème brûlée appear on the nose of the 2019 Mate's Vineyard Chardonnay. Complex and compelling, it's undoubtedly one of Kumeu River's top recent efforts. Medium to full-bodied, plump and generous on the palate, yet marked by zesty acids and a bright, citrusy finish, it's wonderfully balanced and drinkable now, yet it should age effortlessly for at least a decade.

Joe Czerwinski, June 2021
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