Kumeu River

Kumeu, New Zealand

Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2021

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  • Introduction

    • Kumeu River Chardonnay is drawn from six different vineyard sites in the Kumeu Region. We are particularly careful in selecting only the very best grapes from these vineyards for our Kumeu River Estate label.

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Location: Kumeu, Auckland
    • Cultivation: Sustainable
    • Size: 12 hectares (29.7 acres)
    • Vine Age: Varies between 6-32 years
    • Clones: 15, 6, 1066, 548, 121, 134
    • Soil: Clay loam
    • Elevation: 45 meters (147 feet)
    • Exposure: North facing
    • Training: Lyre and VSP
  • Vintage Report

    • The winter of 2020 was relatively mild and dry. Spring came early, but there were frosts to contend with, one in particular causing damage to many of our Kumeu vineyards. Flowering took place well ahead of normal, and it was obvious that the season would be very early this year. The growing season rainfall was only sporadic, maintaining the dry conditions, and the temperatures were moderately warm. These relatively cool to warm, and dry conditions allowed for slow grape maturation, and the development of excellent fruit aromas and flavors. Harvest was completed by 9 March, about 3 weeks ahead of usual. In Kumeu the frost damage had lowered yields by 30-40%, but the overall quality was exceptional.

  • Vinification

    • Hand harvested

      Whole-bunch pressed

      Indigenous-yeast fermentation

      French oak barrels, 20% new oak

      100% barrel fermentation

      100% malolactic fermentation

      11 months maturation in barrel

  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
    • Alcohol: 13.5%
  • Tasting Notes

    • The 2021 vintage was affected by spring frost in 2020 and subsequently yield was 35% less than usual. The quality however was excellent and has produced another fabulous Estate Chardonnay. Kumeu vineyards that contribute to this wine gave us a blend of Chardonnay that is particularly concentrated with very citrus, preserved lemon aromas and a dense layered palate with lingering complexity. This is a quality Chardonnay wine of style and pedigree that is delicious now but has the capability of aging as well as any of its predecessors.



  • Estate Chardonnay, Kumeu – 2021 – Decanter – 94 Points

    “The Brajkovich family's single-vineyard Chardonnays always overdeliver, but the Estate blend offers exceptional value and benchmark quality. The 2022 vintage is the current release, but seek out this 2021 – a lower-yielding year whose concentration, creamy texture and smoky lemon myrtle flavours, offset by preserved lemon acidity, set it apart. Perfect with crispy-skinned chicken – or just the roast veg.”

  • Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2021 – Wine Spectator – 92 Points

    "This showcases a fresh core of citrus, including pomelo, tangerine and Meyer lemon, with generous citrus zest and an appealing touch of pith. Reveals sea salt, lemon verbena and white flowers that linger on the finish."

  • Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2021 – Wine Enthusiast – 95 Points

    “One of the best bargains around, from New Zealand's leading Chardonnay producer, this is restrained, creamy and downright delicious. Vibrant aromas of lemon peel, melon, toast and flint lead to a supple, slinky, elegant palate of tingly citrus acidity and supportive oak.”

  • Chardonnay, Estate, Kumeu — 2021 – James Suckling – 94 Points

    “Lemons, white apricots, white grapefruit, slate and sea shells. Elegant and mineral, with a medium body and creamy, textured and layered palate. Classy and fresh.”