Kumeu River

Kumeu River New Release Tasting August 8th 2019

Kumeu River Ray’s Road Sauvignon Blanc 2018 Hawkes Bay

Regional and vineyard expression - mineral, varietal and complete on the nose with aromas of lemon peel and whispers of lime, white peach and a long lees led finish. While there are some herb notes they are delicate. I suspect this wine will age for sometime to come . Great balance, medium+ length and moderate complexity. Overall a very good example. Drink now and through 2025. 93 Points

Kumeu River Estate Pinot Gris 2018 Auckland

A fine and delicate bouquet with a pure pear, sweet apple, white spice and generous varietal unfurling of flavours. The wine shows off a core of white fleshed fruit with a layer of citrus, the texture has a satin feel with youthful acidity and dry finish. Balanced and ready to enjoy, medium complexity and lengthy finish. Sound, balanced and pure. Drink now and through 2022. 91 Points

Kumeu River Village Chardonnay 2018 - 80% Auckland fruit, 20% Hawkes Bay fruit

A lovely wine, expressive, balanced and varietal showing off all the hallmarks of Kumeu River Chardonnay this wine has a purity of fruit, generous weight, is balanced fresh and well made. With just a whisper of oak the ore of this wine centers on the flavours of pear and peach, a hint of tropical fruit and citrus. Balanced with medium length. Drink now and through 2022. 88 Points

Kumeu River Ray’s Road Chardonnay 2018 Hawkes Bay

An impressive bouquet, palate and texture with aromas and flavours of ripe citrus and orchard stone fruits, layers of fine lees and oak along with ripe acidity and moderate alcohol give this wine the structure it needs to carry the weight and intensity of fruit. A wine with finesse, great texture and length. Balanced with medium+ length and complexity. Drink now and through 2024+. 94 Points

Kumeu River Estate Chardonnay 2018 Auckland

Really quite a delicious wine with a core of white and yellow fleshed fruit flavours, mild calm and balanced use of oak leaving a gentle seam of vanilla and spice in its wake. Clean, ripe, gently creamy texture with contrasting acidity and a light soft saline layer. Love weight an balance, a wine with charm, lengthy finish and medium+ complexity. Drink now and through 2026. 94 Points

Kumeu River Coddington Chardonnay 2018 Auckland

I’ve always loved the bouquet of this wine - the vineyard speaks loudly - this is my NZ Meursault - the wine smells excellent and tastes excellent. Ripe, focused and charming, flavours of white fleshed stone fruits, some citrus then yellow peach and apple. Cashew lees and oak spices combine to add complexity, weight and finish. Medium+ acidity and weight, pure fruit mid-palate and balanced lengthy finish. Young, precise and cellar worthy example. Drinkable now though best from early 2021 through 2028. 95 Points

We also tried the Coddington 2013 Chardonnay. Not only an excellent vinetage this wine was complex and creamy, still fresh , savoury, complex and long - 95 Points

Kumeu River Hunting Hill Chardonnay 2018 Auckland

Complex, feminine, floral, fragrant and alluring bouquet of Chardonnay. Sweet, ripe core of fruit with pear and apple, white peach and gentle oak spice. A saline soil mix along with lees derived spices and cashew nut oak flavours show off this wines prowess, palate presence, complexity and length. Youthful with a firm texture, great balance, long finish and impressive complexity. A delicious wine. Drinkable now, best in cellar for a few years. Best from 2021 through 2029. 96 Points

We also tried the Hunting Hill 2012 Chardonnay - Multi-layered, very complex, focused and fleshy, precise and youthful. Layers of citrus, stone fruits and apple then oak. 96 Points

Kumeu River Mate’s Chardonnay 2018 Auckland

A captivating and attention seeking bouquet of Chardonnay - aromas and flavours of yellow and white fleshed fruits, no mistaking a citrus and light saline moment - combine with textures of acidity and oak, lees and synergies of site and soil to capture this Mate’s vineyard expression. Precise, pure, complex and lengthy finish. If you can find some of this wine to buy - please do. Drinkable now, cellar worthy fir sure. Best from 2021 through 2031. 97 Points

We also tried the Mate’s 2006 Chardonnay - what a treat….toasty, complex, ready with flavours of baked custard and peach, quite nutty and textured. Though at its peak now this wine shows how Kumeu River the place, great team work in the vineyard and excellent wine making can produce world class wine. 98 Points

Kumeu River Village Pinot Noir 2018 Hawkes Bay

From Ray’s Road - Aromas of light reed fruits led by cherry and yellow plum. Light weight on the palate, but loaded with Pinosity and flavours that mirror the nose. Fine tannins, plenty of acidity, balanced and well made in a drink now style. Best from today and through 2022. 89 Points

Kumeu River Ray’s Road Pinot Noir 2018 Hawkes Bay

A bouquet of Pinosity and a clean, fresh, fruity varietal signature. A steely haunt with a light savoury complexity, flavours of light red fruits - darker cherry, red apple and tea. A layer of earthiness shows off a stony almost white clay soil flavour and a touch of button mushroom. Youthful tannins with a slightly firm grip and acidity to match. Perhaps leave this wine in cellar till late 2020, or decant. Best from late 2020 through 2025. 91 Points

Kumeu River Hunting Hill Pinot Noir 2017 Auckland

My notes are the same for this wine as you discover in the World of Wine Magazine Vol 2. Winter 2019.


Kumeu River Crémant NV Auckland

Made with 60% Chardonnay and 40% Pinot Noir - this is a delicious wine. Dry, crisp, textured and layered with a fine almost explosive mousse. Flavours of citrus and white nectarine, leesy and fine, crisp, dry and gently toasty. A great aperitif option. 92 Points

Cameron Douglas