Kongsgaard 2017 Chardonnay

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Dunnuck 96+pts: The 2017 Chardonnay slips sensuously out of the glass with beguiling notions of creme brulee, orange blossoms and lemon curd over a core of apricot tart and pineapple upside down cake plus a waft of marzipan. The full-bodied palate is stacked with exotic fruit and citrus layers, structured by a satiny texture and bold freshness, finishing very, very long. Wow!

There is a trade-off, Alex Kongsgaard told me when I asked he and his father, John, about the benefits of their extended barrel age regime for the Chardonnays. With more time in barrel, the wine gains more complexity. But if you go too far, then you overwhelm the terroir. The place becomes less transparent. For us, there a sweet spot. We like to have the fruit at the background. Our wine has enough inherent structure that it thrives on that. The terroir gives it the structure so that it can take more and more in terms of natural fermentation, long elevage, etc. Robert Parker once called Kongsgaard technique The Death & The Resurrection.

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