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2016 Brokenwood Hunter Valley Semillon

Cracka Value Rating
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Cracka Review

We often talk of the triumphant trio in wine where the producer, region and variety combine to bring you the best. Here’s a classy example of Brokenwood, the Hunter Valley and Semillon creating a magnificent threesome. As a young wine it shows aromas of lemon and straw before a sweet fruit palate of lime and apple and an excellent acid structure ensuring it will last for years. This will of course develop after 5 years and become like honey on toast.

Winemaker's Notes

Early rains and a later ripening harvest than 2015 has produced a typical lime pith/juice flavours making a fragrant Semillon. The colour is perfect with lots of luminous green tints. Only 10.5% alcohol, the palate shows great fruit intensity, some hay-like notes and a zesty citrus acidity on the finish. The flavours linger on for quite some time, a classic Hunter Valley wine.

Vinification: Harvesting all by hand, the fruit was crushed, chilled and pressed immediately. Neutral yeasts were used for the fermentation, bottled in May. No oak and no malolactic ferment, only stainless steel.

Winemaker Comments: For Hunter Valley grape growers, pre-vintage discussion is all about the weather. In recent years harvest has been in full swing by the second week of January, however not so for 2016. Wet and cloudy conditions meant later ripening on most varieties. The Hunter Valley went back to its typical dry winter with no significant rain recorded between 23rd May and 24th August 2015. Major rainfall wasn’t received until the first 2 weeks of December (121mm) but accompanied a hailstorm on the 10th. This basically cut a swath right through the middle of Pokolbin with the south of Mount View and north of Deasy’s Rd escaping. Another storm went through a week later bringing the months total up to 181mm and the yearly rainfall to 1051mm, well above the average of 720mm. January saw records set for rainfall with Brokenwood recording 338mm and then the tap was turned off with fine weather prevailing through February. Handpicking this fruit has resulted in fine, fragrant Semillons.

Food Pairing: Asian food, any seafood especially freshly shucked oysters.

Drink: Drinking well now but will improve with further bottle age.

Alc/vol: 10.5%

expert reviews about

2016 Brokenwood Hunter Valley Semillon

Expert Reviews

Tyson Stelzer (2011 Vintage) says
A mesmerising paradox: Moreish from day one and it can live for thirty years, as a recent vertical proved! The 2011 is clean and even, with precise lemon juice and cut grass lingering fine and long; a delicate flick of ripeness provides approachability on the finish. A confident vintage for this label.
Wine Taste - Edition 30
James Halliday (2011 Vintage) says
If practice ever made perfect, surely it is with this wine, made to be enjoyed young, but still able to repay medium-term cellaring. Pale quartz; the bouquet is clean and pure, with cut grass and apple/citrus aromas, the palate fresh and lively, building impact on the back-palate and finish, yet doing so with delicate, rather than phenolic, flavours.
to 2016
Halliday's Top 100 Aussie Wines 2011
James Halliday (2010 Vintage) says
Pale quartz-green; right in the mainstream of Hunter Valley semillon, still delicate on the bouquet, but with a palate full of nervous energy (nervosity in French) and tingling citrus/lemongrass flavours running through to a very long finish.
Australian Wine Companion 2012 2011
James Halliday (2009 Vintage) says
A delicate yet positive flowery bouquet hints at what is to come on the vivid mid-palate, with citrus to the fore, and background touches of stone fruits; the zesty acidity cleanses the finish and guarantees a long life if you wish to cellar it.
Australian Wine Companion 2011 2010
Tyson Stelzer (2009 Vintage) says
Drink it now, drink it in a decade, you can’t lose in any great vintage of this ambidextrous semillon! Lemon and lime now, lanolin and toast later, with a glorious undercurrent of minerality that won’t fade. $17 at Kemeny’s and Dan Murphy’s and $18 at WineStar.
James Halliday (2008 Vintage) says
Crisp, fresh, zesty aromas and flavours, gaining velocity on the back-palate and finish, with notes of lemon/lemon rind; lingering aftertaste.
Australian Wine Companion 2010 2009
James Halliday (2006 Vintage) says
Spotlessly clean; a classic young semillon, finely tuned and honed notes of lemon rind, herb, spice and mineral; great acidity and mouthfeel.
Australian Wine Companion 2008 2007
James Halliday (2005 Vintage) says
Vibrantly fresh and crisp; spotlessly clean; lemony, grassy, minerally flavours; citrussy acidity; dry finish. Spot on the money.
Australian Wine Companion 2007 2006
James Halliday (2004 Vintage) says
Spotlessly clean; precisely balanced and structured lime, lemon and talc/mineral acidity.
Australian Wine Companion 2007 2006
James Halliday (2002 Vintage) says
Shows semillon's ability to shrug off inclement vintage rain. Delicate but fragrant fresh grass, lemon zest and spice aromas lead into a crisp, mouth-tingling palate with a long, bright finish. Understated style.
Australian Wine Companion 2004 2003
James Halliday (2001 Vintage) says
Bright mineral, grass and herb aromas expand in the mouth, with gently sweet fruit on the mid-palate providing exemplary balance right through to the lingering finish.
Australian Wine Companion 2003 2002

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