4 years ago Villa Maria kindly gave me a magnum of their 1994 Barrique Fermented Black Label Chardonnay to express thanks for FWD Co. support, it's a relationship we very much enjoy. I have always said that Villa Maria are the finest across the board wine producer in NZ, their combination of wine quality and value across a large portfolio of different wines and price points is unmatched by any other NZ winery.
We opened this magnum with friends on Easter Monday at a long lunch, I must say I was a bit apprehensive that at 23-years of age it would be over the hill... not so! It was in superb condition, showing development of course, but still expressing delicious fruit in concert with creamy lees and barrel characters that were perfectly in balance. An outstanding Chardonnay experience, which bodes well for any of you Chardonnay lovers wanting to cellar any of their more recent releases, you could expect them to live even longer (note this was a magnum). I think the Villa Maria Black Label Chardonnays are under-priced and offer amazing cellar proposition to lovers of serious Chardonnay.
A memorable wine, thanks Sir George and the team at Villa.
Jeff Poole FWD Co. Proprietor.