Gasper Chardonnay Rebula 2015  £11.95

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One of our favourite white wine finds of recent times is the best way to describe this.  It really does deliver serious value for money from an up and coming region making waves around the world.

Gašper is located in Goriška Brda, which makes up the two thirds of Collio stretching into Slovenia from Friuli-Venezia Giulia in north-eastern Italy. Goriška Brda has a climate ideally suited to viticulture, with its proximity to both the Adriatic Sea and the Alps providing dry, warm summers with cooling breezes during the crucial ripening period. The Gašper wine estate is a joint venture between a local cooperative and the Čarman family, who have been in the wine and hospitality business for over 50 years. At the helm of the cellar is Darinko Ribolica, a respected oenologist from Goriška Brda. He uses Slovenia’s local varieties, deeply rooted in Germanic, Slavic and Roman cultural influences, to create wines in a modern, fresh style.

The Gašper vineyards are between 10 and 25 years old, and characterised by ‘opoka’ marl soil and excellent sun exposure on terraced, hillside rows. There is also the benefit of altitude, ranging from 80-200 metres above sea level, which helps the grapes retain acidity and aromatics. Vines are single Guyot trained and planted at a density of 4,000 to 5,000 per hectare. All picking is done by cooperative partners, family members and friends, which allows for a careful selection of fruit that enhances the quality of the final wine.

Weather conditions were favourable with intense heat during the day and night. This is reflected in the distinctive aromas and characteristics of the 2015 wines. During the summer, there were many sunny days, combined with just the right amount of precipitation. Harvest started in the first half of September and ended on 1st October.

All fruit was pressed using a pneumatic press. 95% of the wine was fermented in stainless steel, with the remainder fermented in large, 6,000 litre Slavonian oak casks. After blending these components, the wine was matured in 100% stainless steel tanks. The wine did not undergo malolactic fermentation to retain freshness and acidity.

Light straw in colour, this is a fresh and fruity wine that displays hints of peach and citrus. A vibrant acidity and lovely roundness, from 5% of the wine being fermented in oak, combine on the palate in this compelling Slovenian blend.