Hawke's Bay 2020 Chardonnays

Villa Maria Keltern vineyard

Producers in this coastal region are working together to regain a reputation for their Chardonnays. Successfully?

When I first visited Hawke's Bay on the east coast of New Zealand's North Island – ooh, aeons ago – the region was famous for the quality of its Chardonnays; the name and concept of reds from a Hawke's Bay subdistrict called Gimblett Gravels hadn't even been dreamt up. Te Mata Coleraine was the one Hawke's Bay red we had heard of.

Since then NZ convulsed into Sauvignon Blanc worship, growers urged to pull out Chardonnay (and anything else) to make way for Sauvignon...