I’ve had a couple of looks at Berton ‘s wines in the past: Their High Eden and their Metal range. These 2 chardonnays are from their 2nd and mid-level ranges. The Riverina produces approx 60% of New South Wales’ wine and is one of the production powerhouses of Australia.
Berton Vineyards, Head Over Heels, Chardonnay, SEA, 2014
One of the annoying things about moving interstate with a truckload of wine, is that whilst you’re in transit and the wine is in storage, you may not be able to get a review out whilst the release is current. I’m sure it even happens to Halliday occasionally. Berton have since moved onto the 2015 release.
According to the accompanying tech sheet, the fruit for the wine is sourced: 76% Riverina (NSW), 19.7% Alpine Valley, 1.5% Swan Hill (Vic) and 2.6% Padthaway (SA). I’m not sure where the other 0.2% comes from.
Smells flabby on the nose: Creamy notes of lanolin, jasmine, mushy cashews, soft honeydew tropical melon and a little lemon tart-biscuit. Leaner on the palate than the nose suggest. There’s that sweet melon tropical fruit along with bittersweet grapefruit, some vanilla, framed by spiky acid. Not too much work in the winery to try to tart this up or sharpen it with acids, this tastes like some cool climate Chardonnay, even if the flavour doesn’t linger too long. It’s even cheaper to buy from the winery.
Alc (Bottle label): 12.5%
Alc (Tech Sheet): 12.93%
Berton Vineyards, Metal Range Classic, Chardonnay, SEA, 2014
Tech sheet only mentions Padthaway (SA) but I’m sure it has a similar mix to the younger minx as above.
Oak is evident on the nose and wraps up soft lime juice, grapefruit, sweet Arnott’s “Nice” biscuits. Creamy and nutty, there’s grip for body and palate weight with plenty of sweet/sour grapefruit. Lasting note is a resiny/hoppy/tropical flavour. Acidity is a little too sour for me and works gratingly against the natural tartness of the grape’s flavour.
Alc (Bottle label & tech sheet): 13.5%
Wine samples courtesy of Berton Vineyards