Joelle Thomson

Wine writer and award winning wine author

What I am drinking, reading and savouring each week


Chardonnay comeback highlighted in Bay

Hawke’s Bay Winegrowers has announced its fourth annual top 12 Chardonnays, all selected by wine consultant Cameron Douglas, MS, from the 2022 vintage.

The wines are the current releases from most of the wineries and were chosen from a wider tasting of 42 submissions, all from Hawke's Bay. Douglas says he reaffirms his belief that Hawke's Bay's best Chardonnays can rival top Chardonnays from other countries and wine regions, including Burgundy, France.

Chardonnay is one of the most significant varietal wines and key grape varieties in Hawke’s Bay, accounting for approximately a quarter of the region's total producing vineyard area. 

The newly released top 12 Chardonnays all come from 2022, reflecting the time it takes to produce complex dry wines from the Chardonnay grape. This includes longer fermentation, malolactic fermentation and oak ageing. 

The new top 12 Hawke's Bay Chardonnays
Askerne Chardonnay 2022
Askerne Reserve Chardonnay 2022
Bilancia Kaikora Vineyard Chardonnay 2022
Church Road Grand Reserve Chardonnay 2022
Craggy Range Les Beaux Cailloux 2022
Craggy Range Kidnappers Vineyard Chardonnay 2022
Elephant Hill Sea Chardonnay 2022
Paritua “Willow” Chardonnay 2022
Smith & Sheth CRU Heretaunga Chardonnay 2022
Squawking Magpie Counting Crows Chardonnay 2022
Squawking Magpie Terraces & Gravels Chardonnay 2022
Tony Bish Skeetfield Chardonnay 2022