Easily the most embryonic Curly Chard I’ve had in some time, with this Curly Flat Chardonnay 2018 looking definitively cool climate.
Caramel nougat over a palate that is tighter, leaner, snap crackle and poppier. It wants to be rich, honeyed, banana cream pie juice, but the acid won’t let it. For the moment, that makes for a wine of 9/10ths though when it comes out, this promises much.
Best drinking: don’t drink it yet as it doesn’t feel cohesive. From next year and likely for up to a decade at this rate. 17.7/20, 92/100+. 13.3%, $46. Curly Flat website. Would I buy it? A glass now, more later.
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Hello Andrew, My last vintage at CF was 2017 so this is the first CF Chardonnay under Matt Harrop who has quite a reputation for cool climate Chardonnay. I thought about your term “embryonic” and wondered why then realised that this Chardonnay will be different to the prior CFs because the winery treatment is very different. Less time on lees, less malo, less new oak, less time in barrel, less time resting in tank, so perhaps development may take longer? Another difference would be it is a ‘natural’ ferment, an approach I dropped for Chardonnay as some years it struggled so I preferred the safe route. While I am a little disappointed with the score, I applaud you for, yet again, having a range in your scores, unlike so many other reviewers who seem to favour the 9, 5, 6 and 7 keys.