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Felton Road is one of the world’s most southerly producers, located in the Central Otago region of New Zealand’s south island. The winery was founded in 1991 and has been certified biodynamic since 2002. Their Bannockburn Chardonnay is sourced from their Elms and Cornish Point vineyards. The 2021 growing season was relatively cool and long, producing an excellent, fresh and lively version of their Bannockburn Chardonnay, gently interwoven with very subtle oaky complexity.
Winemaker tasting note
“Notes of brioche, almond, peach and vivid citrus that culminate in white florals. There’s a really busy palate: multidimensional, lots of material, but at the same time driving through is a precise, linear wine with a tight focus. Bright acidity contributes to this, as does the detailed and saline finish.” Blair Walter, winemaker
“An initial impression of white flowers and white peach soon reveals a saline/oyster shell note with toasted nut and subtle spicy oak. The wine is supported by juicy acidity which drives a lingering finish. Nicely layered chardonnay with purity and heft.” 97pts Bob Campbell MW
“Ein erster Eindruck von weissen Blumen und Pfirsich offenbart eine salzige Austernschalen-Note mit gerösteten Nüssen und subtiler würziger Eiche. Unterstützt wird der Wein von einer saftigen Säure, die einen langen Abgang antreibt. ” 97 Punkte Bob Campbell MW
The grapes were whole bunch pressed with the juice flowing to barrel by gravity after overnight settling. Fermentation in French oak (mostly well-seasoned barrels with just 5% new) with indigenous yeasts has produced a wine with considerable complexity. A long and complete indigenous malolactic fermentation with only periodic stirring of the lees (Batonnage), combined with 11 months on full lees; has softened the acid for a rich and complex mouthfeel. In accordance with our non-interventionalist approach to winemaking, this wine was not fined or filtered after spending 13 months total in barrel.