Kumeu River

Kumeu, New Zealand

Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu – 2009

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  • Vineyard Profile

    • Overlooking Maté’s Vineyard, Hunting Hill is named after the hillside farmland where Maté used to hunt rabbits and pheasants for the home kitchen. It was the site of the first vines to produce Kumeu River Chardonnay in the mid-1980s, and has always contributed lovely ripe, rich fruit to the Estate Chardonnay. After being replanted in 2000, Hunting Hill shows beautifully ripe fruit with a distinctive minerality.

    • Location: Kumeu is a sub-region of the Auckland wine district. Despite being situated well north of New Zealand’s other viticultural regions, Kumeu’s climate is kept cool due to its close proximity to the Tasman Sea, just 20 kilometers (nearly 12.5 miles) to the west, and the Pacific Ocean 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) to the east. These two large bodies of water generate clouds, keeping peak summer temperatures below 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit).
    • Vine Age: 7 years
  • Vinification

    • Whole-bunch pressed

    • Fermentation: Indigenous yeast
    • Malolactic: 100%
    • Barrel Fermentation: 100%
    • Barrel Aging: Aged 11 months in 25% new, 75% 1-5-year- old 225-liter/60-gallon French oak
  • Technical Information

    • Alcohol: 14%
  • Tasting Notes

    • The 2009 vintage was long and dry and produced clean, ripe Chardonnay with racy acidity. The 2009 Hunting Hill is beautifully fragrant with its lemon/lime blossom characters and lovely fruit purity. This wine shares some of the characters with the neighboring Maté’s Vineyard with its attractive floral notes and restrained elegance. The Hunting Hill Vineyard has a particularly pure character that, in its youth, displays a tight, crisp palate that needs some bottle-age to reveal the power and concentration that lies beneath the surface. This wine will improve with bottle-age for four to eight years.



  • Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu – 2009 – 91 points – Wine & Spirits

    "It's the fruitiest of these Kumeu River releases, with scents of caramelized pineapple and orange surrounded by the leesiness of a native yeast fermentation in barrel. Broad and toasty, this would match salmon roasted on cedar planks."

  • Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu – 2009 – 91 points – jamessuckling.com

    “Lots of sliced green apple and white peaches. Full and lively with tension. Zingy finish. Taut. Delicious.”

  • Chardonnay, Hunting Hill, Kumeu – 2009 – 91 points – Wine Spectator

    “This is both rich and juicy, displaying a smoky, floral note that dances around the ripe tangerine, yellow apple and melon flavors. Offers a supple texture, with details of marzipan and lanolin.”