Grape Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Growing Region: Marlborough, New Zealand
Senior Winemaker: Nadine Worley

This Mud House ‘Single Vineyard’ Chardonnay was sourced from the so named ‘Hungry Hill’ vineyard situated in the remote and largely unknown ‘Ure Valley’ located 40km south of Blenheim at the south-eastern point of the Marlborough Region. The vineyard is just 1km from the Pacific Ocean, and planted on river gravels and limestone chip soils unique to the region, producing well-structured grapes with natural fine aromatics and minerality.

 

Even though I have only used a photo of Nadine in this article - it must be noted that both Nadine and Cleighten Cornelius (a key part of the winemaking team since 2012) worked together to craft this wine.
The 2014 vintage across Marlborough was a testing one for all from start and definitely at the finish. Those who had worked hard in the vineyard and were able to wait through the unpredictable weather changes picked good fruit which have made vibrant wines. The fruit from the ‘Hungry Hill’ Vineyard was hand harvested from the 15th of April, with the last parcels coming into the winery over the follow 4-5 days. During 2014 the Ure Valley site produced fruit with good balanced acidity, and well-rounded flavour development.
After a selective hand harvesting process, the grapes were brought back into the winery and whole bunch pressed. The free run juice was settled in tank for 24 hours before being transferred into oak barrels to complete fermentation. The wine was then aged and matured in 100% French oak barriques, with 20% being new oak. After the primary fermentation the wine then underwent partial malolactic fermentation. The wine was then racked from each oak barrel after 10 months and bottled in January 2015.
In your glass you will be greeted by a golden straw colour. On the nose enticing though subtle aromas of rock-melon, white peaches and entwined oak spice. Even after a good year in the bottle the wines natural citrus characters are clean and firm with an elegant textural palate appeal. The wines naturally lifted levels of acidity will also hold the wine in good stead over the next few years. With those firm, stone-fruit characters of white peaches, having matured and are enhanced from the good use of well-structured French oak and that partial malolactic fermentation now starting to show a creaminess across a layered mid-palate through into a lingering finish.
This 2014 ‘Hungry Hill' Chardonnay has 13.0% Alc. Chill gently and serve at 8-10°C. 

Stone-fruits and well balanced oak in this bright Marlborough Chardonnay.

CELLARING POTENTIAL:
Drinking perfectly well this coming season; plus will age well over the next 2-3 years. 

SUGGESTED FOOD MATCHES:
Perfect wine pairing with roast, grilled or bbq’d chicken, with grilled courgettes served with a light lemon, caper and olive oil dressing, or with creamy aged cheeses - enjoy.