Matawhero ‘IRWIN’ Gisborne Chardonnay 2019

Grape Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Growing Region: Gisborne - New Zealand
Owners / Directors: Kirsten & Richard Searle
5 Stars ★★★★★

The 4th release of this limited edition barrel fermented premium quality Chardonnay of outstanding lineage. This flagship ‘Irwin’ Chardonnay is a tribute to the late Bill Irwin and his son Denis, the founders of Matawhero Wines. Bill is considered the father of modern viticulture in New Zealand.
He imported new varietals including this Mendoza Chardonnay into New Zealand back in the late 1960's. Bill was also corresponding with viticultural experts in Europe, Australia and the States and was responsible for the importation of virus-free rootstock into New Zealand. Which gave vineyards of the 1970’s and the wine industry, a strong base which to flourish.
The fruit was harvested from the famous Tietjen vineyard situated on the ‘Golden Slopes’ - which had achieved superb ripeness. The grapes, 100% Mendoza Chardonnay were gently pressed and slightly clarified prior to fermentation. The juice was then inoculated with an indigenous yeast from the vineyard using a technique called Pied du Cuvé. This gives a ‘true sense of place’ of the vineyard and provides layers of complexity and palate texture. Fermentation was in a mix of 10 American and Hungarian oak barriques (with 30% being new) which gave a perfect integration of oak character and a full 100% malolactic fermentation has added palate richness and length. The wine was ‘sur lie’ for 10 months before being fined and they numbered 3060 bottles.

In the glass you will be greeted by a pale gold colour and a shining hue. On the nose you are invited in by ripe stone fruits, wildflowers and freshly baked bread crust. On the palate this layered Chardonnay has started to reveal ripe peaches and green melon flavours, entwined with blanched almonds and subtle vanilla notes that give detail to a refined texture. A complex though currently graciously taught Chardonnay with deftly infused seasoned oak, balanced by a solid core of natural fruit acidity and a harmonious classic dry finish.

This 2019 Matawhero ‘Irwin’ Gisborne Chardonnay has 13.2% Alc./vol. A dry style with 2g/L of residual sugar. Chill gently and serve in an appropriately shaped medium-full wine glass at 9°- 11°C.

A premium quality Gisborne Chardonnay that is graciously balanced.

CELLARING POTENTIAL: *(Review 26/9/21)
With cool decanting, drinking this season; though would appreciate 9-12 months and will age gracefully for another 5 - 6 years.

Perfect wine pairing with roasted or bbq’d chicken, turkey, pork with crackling, creamy pasta dishes, rich vegetarian cuisine and aged creamy cheeses - enjoy.

Always drink responsibly.


more wine reviews