FIVE STARS 94/100 | Sam Kim, Wine Orbit
94 POINTS | Bob Campbell, The Real Review
94 POINTS | Cameron Douglas MS
Another stellar effort from this famous Cooper's Creek release, and the 2020 continues a long line of great chardonnays vinted under the Swamp Road label. Produced from hand-picked fruit grown on the Havelock North hills (Swamp Road hasn't been grown in Swamp Road for many years!) this is bright and quite full-bodied wine with real mid-palate drive and excellent depth. 2020 was a great growing year in Hawke's Bay and this benchmark chardonnay is looking in great wonderful form with layers of creamy citrus / stonefruit flavours, spicy oak and cleansing fresh acid on the finish.
Sam Kim, Wine Orbit writes "Seductively generous and comforting, the wine shows golden peach, pineapple, French vanilla, cedar and brioche characters, followed by a richly textured palate that's filled with ripe fruit intensity backed by creamy texture and refreshing acidity. Wonderfully rounded and satisfying."
Cameron Douglas MS writes "Deep straw and polished lemon hues lead to a bouquet of complexity and power. Aromas of dark fleshed peach and ripe red apple, nectarine and toasty barrel, quince flesh and sweet roasted Brazil-nut new wood scents. Dry, full-bodied, flavours reflect the bouquet with power and intensity. Medium+ acidity and a satin - whipped cream touch then fine tannins from wood layer in. Flavours of stone fruits and white fleshed orchard harvest, vanilla and roasted nut flavours. A big wine with longevity on its side. Lengthy finish. A food wine for a while yet with best drinking from late 2024 through 2030."
The winery writes "Our Swamp Reserve Chardonnay comes from a single vineyard on the Havelock North hills. It is a very sheltered north facing site, with dry-grown vines on Taupo pumice soils amongst limestone outcrops. This is a rich and full-bodied dry white wine and is a great match for fish, pork and poultry dishes."