95/100

2012 Balnaves Chardonnay

wine
  • Type - White
  • Variety - Chardonnay
  • Winery - Balnaves
  • Region - Coonawarra
  • Price Range - $15 - $30
  • RRP - $28

This winery is a family affair with Pete Balnaves running the vineyards and Kirsty the marketing, while their father, Doug, is the founder. Only the winemaker is a ring-in: Peter Bissell, who tells us on the back label what yeasts he used to ferment the juice! The colour is light yellow, the bouquet a complex amalgam of roasted hazelnut, honey and cashew, with some creamy yeast lees notes. These are joined by stone-fruit flavours and hints of nougat on the palate. It's rich and multi-layered, with freshness, harmony and vitality. An outstanding chardonnay. 13 per cent alcohol. 

Aging: Now to 2020.
Food: Chicken satay.

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