Established in 2012, Bondar Wines is the vision of husband and wife team Andre Bondar and Selina Kelly, who are based out of the iconic Rayner vineyard in McLaren Vale. In a relatively short period of time Bondar has made a big impression on the Australian wine scene; named James Halliday's 'Best New Winery' in his 2017 Australian Wine Companion, they were also named one of the Top 50 'Young Guns of Wine' in 2018.
Hailing from one of Australia's premier Chardonnay region, this 2020 Bondar Adelaide Hills is made from grapes grown in a single vineyard in Echunga. Hand-picked and lightly pressed straight to barrel, the juice was allowed to ferment naturally in French oak barrels (about 25% new) and two ceramic eggs for about ten months. The result is a pristine Chardonnay with the vibrancy, depth and subtle power the region is famous for in its Chardonnay.
"Echunga. Bless you. White peach, almond and lemon peel, with some spicy cedar oak, and a slight smokiness. It’s fresh, some lemon oil in with green melon, firm acidity, powdery texture, but the finish is a little ashen and clipped, or so I think. Good wine, but the feel is that it doesn’t quite stretch its legs. I’d drink sooner rather than later. 90 Points Sep21 12.5% alc. $35 Screwcap Drink: 2021 - 2022+" - Gary Walsh, The Wine Front.
Their home is the iconic Rayner Vineyard in McLaren Vale, where the oldest vines date back to the 1950's. Plantings of bush vine Grenache are up to 50 years old and Shiraz up to 65 years are already in play, while newer, more close planted Counoise (one of the 13 Châteauneuf varieties) has been recently planted, and Mataro, Carignan and Cinsault are on the horizon.
The vineyards are in the process of transitioning to progressively more organic management, which will undoubtedly see quality hit even greater heights. There will always be purchased fruit as well but ultimately, it seems likely that Bondar’s finest wines will come from their own sites.
In a relatively short period of time, Bondar has already made a big impression on the Australian wine scene. Named James Halliday's 'Best New Winery' in his 2017 Australian Wine Companion, they were also named one of the Top 50 Young Guns of Wine in 2018, along with collecting several trophies at the McLaren Vale Wine Show.
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