Can you believe it’s 2019? Already? Where did last year disappear to? Sketchy memories of a challenging year seem to evaporate every time I try to grasp hold of one and recall exactly what happened. There were highs, of course. This Chardonnay, for instance, which drinks like a dream now – and won’t break the bank.

2016 Mahi Marlborough Chardonnay $29

Like a stock pile of great looking labels, this wine arrived late in the piece in 2018 and I finally had the opportunity to give it proper attention this week, only to be wowed by its beautiful big, full body, dry flavours, fresh citrusyness… and all balanced beautifully by a gentle note of creaminess, which fits the style and never takes over the wine’s lemony fresh taste.

This is a great wine from a top producer – winemaker Brian Bicknell (who also owns Mahi Wines). Here, he highlights the potential of Marlborough to make exceptional quality Chardonnay that drinks well now and has the power to go the distance too – it can age for five to six years and longer in a optimum cellaring conditions.

I am an independent wine writer, journalist and editor, and all views expressed on this website are entirely my own.