The great beauty of Chardonnay is its capacity to capture subtlety and nuance, which Villa Maria celebrates to the fullest with its compelling range of Chardonnay wines sourced from special sites across New Zealand.
These wines speak clearly of their sense of place through captivating aromas, flavours and textures. Villa Maria has a long history of producing exceptional Chardonnays from an array of regions that tell distinctive and compelling stories.
Near the top of New Zealand’s North Island, Villa Maria’s Ihumātao Vineyard sits within a sheltered 160,000-year-old volcanic crater beside Auckland’s Manukau Harbour. Chardonnay grapes grown here benefit from a diverse soil profile and cooling maritime breezes that ensure optimal retention of fresh aromas and acidity. This fruit in turn yields the Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumātao Chardonnay, showing rounded, fleshy textures, with opulent lemon pith and white peach at its core, and hints of fresh rockmelon wrapped around a firm acid spine. Its long, persistent flavours glide effortlessly and roll languidly on the palate.
McDiarmid Hill vineyard in Gisborne, beautifully positioned in the remote and dramatic northeastern corner of New Zealand’s North Island, sits on an elevated north-facing slope. The region’s warm summers and mild winters provide average yearly sunshine of around 2200 hours, explaining why Gisborne has become popularly regarded as New Zealand’s Chardonnay Capital. Fermented in barrel, Villa Maria Single Vineyard McDiarmid Hill Chardonnay not only captures wonderfully ripe flavours of pure apple and nectarine, but also introduces intriguing dark, nutty notes, while a hint of toasty oak binds a firm palate.
Hawkes Bay on New Zealand’s North Island has a diverse and dramatic landscape, with north-facing ranges running down to expansive alluvial plains that stretch to a large, curved coastline. Villa Maria’s Keltern Vineyard is a very dry, warm site established on an ancient riverbed and buffered by the Ngaruroro River. The Villa Maria Single Vineyard Keltern Chardonnay shows delicate and complex aromas of white-fleshed stone fruit, flowers, biscuit and hazelnut. Intricate influences from barrel fermentation meld with stone fruit and acidity on the palate, forming a refined marriage of style and length.
Located on the northeastern coast of New Zealand’s South Island is the country’s most well-known region, Marlborough. Villa Maria’s Taylors Pass Vineyard is located on the Awatere River in Marlborough, predominantly dry and influenced by cool coastal breezes and winds from Mount Tapuae-o-Uenuku that extend the grape ripening period. Soils range from silt over gravels to stony gravels, with large greywacke river stones that reflect heat and assist with even fruit ripening. Villa Maria Single Vineyard Taylors Pass Chardonnay combines the best attributes of fruit from three Marlborough sub-regions to produce a wine with fragrant citrus, complex flint and nut aromas, laced with a distinctive core of tightly woven lemon and mineral characters in a concentrated, focused palate.
Such diversity rewards Villa Maria customers with a raft of exceptional drinking experiences, as its extensive selection of Chardonnay expressions show off the pinnacle of New Zealand winemaking and vineyard site expression.
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