Reserve wines are from low-yielding vines producing superior grapes showing intense fruit flavours and pure varietal expression. The winemaking philosophy is to achieve "balance" of flavour, structure and texture.
Reserve wines are more complex than the Mills Reef range and by matching them with food can greatly enhance your dining experience.
This excellent Chardonnay is highly appealing, with pronounced yellow stone-fruit, rock melon, nashi pear and ginger spice flavours, finishing with toasty oak and butterscotch notes. Barrel fermentation and aging in quality oak has conferred a lovely creamy weight, length and complexity.
The grapes for this classical variety were sourced from one of our acclaimed single vineyards, Riverview, overlooking the Ngaruroro River. The 2019/20 growing season in Hawkes Bay enjoyed a climate of consistently warm, clear, sunny days and uniform temperatures. This weather pattern allowed the grapes to develop perfectly and be harvested slowly at optimal ripeness.
Harvesting of the chardonnay grapes took place on the 14th of March with the fruit arriving at the winery in excellent condition.
The juice was barrel fermented with a selection of chardonnay specific yeasts, in French oak barrels (78%) and a small parcel of tank fermentation. Then, the wine underwent 100% malolactic fermentation to achieve an integrated buttery texture. Thereafter, each parcel spent ten months in oak (30% new French) with frequent lees stirring for enhanced complexity. The final wine was composed from selected barrels and batches to achieve the desired wine style, before bottling under screwcap on the 16th of March, 2021.