2021 RIKARD Black Label Chardonnay


Our Black Label Chardonnay is only made in exceptional vintages, utilising the best fruit of the vintage to create and elegant wine that is fine-boned, subtle and restrained. It is made to be delicate and pretty, held by a persistent spine of acid in its youth. Whilst approachable young, it should slowly unravel with time to reveal even greater depth and complexity.


The 2020/21 growing season was a fabulous year for Chardonnay. It was cool and long and with adequate rainfall – producing a crop with lovely phenolic ripeness, but with intense acidity and brightness.  Yields were reduced due to the previous-season drought conditions, but the small quantities more than made up for it in quality! A vintage that will surely be considered as one of the best of the decade and one which has produced some long-lived wines. This wine is certainly no exception.


It is a selection of the best 5 barrels of the 2021 Vintage. Barrels were selected for their intensity of flavour, a strong acid drive and that little bit of finesse compared to the 2021 (Blue label) Chardonnay.


1462 in stock


On the nose there’s lemon curd & melon with some roasted hazelnuts and nougat. A lovely floral note floats in and out. There’s a hint of gun smoke there too. Preserved lemon and the odd whiff of fennel.

The palate is taught, fine and intricately layered with citrus fruits and toasted brioche. Texture is central to the wine – it is an abundance, all grainy, chewy and savoury. There’s a lovely minerally character to the palate, like wet stone. Some structural wood tannin is embedded in there too but is balanced delicately by the intense weight of stonefruit and juicy lime.

The long finish I’m sure would be worth savouring… if only I could resist taking another sip and allow it to play out in its entirety! Let me know!


Winemaking notes:

– Fruit from 3 different sites ranging from 870-1000m above sea level
– 3 separate picks starting 10th March to 27th March 2021
– Handpicked into 10kg baskets
– Chilled overnight, lightly pressed. Free run & pressings separated
– Racked to barrels on full solids, approximately 33% new oak
– Wild yeast ferment in 225L barriques with regular battonage for the first 6 months
– Full natural malolactic fermentation
– Lees stirred monthly for 11 months
– Racked & blended February 2022 into stainless steel tank
– Naturally settled and then racked without fining or additions
– Lightly filtered pre-bottling March 2022