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The wines of Chain of Ponds, Adelaide Hills, South Australia

Main Adelaide Road, Gumercaha (PO Box 365), South Australia 5233, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)8 8389 1415
UK Agent: Bibendum

A fairly new arrival on the Aussie wine scene, Chain of Ponds has created quite a reputation since their first commercial vintage in 1993. There are around 150 acres of vines, planted in 1988, and at an altitude of 300–400 m, this is a relatively cool climate region. My verdict? While these wines are consistently very good, the Riesling, Sauvignon/Semillon and Semillon didn't quite hit the spot for me. Perhaps they need a year or so to open out? My pick of the bunch was the delicious Shiraz, followed by the intense Chardonnay. Prices should be hovering around the 10 mark for most of these.

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Riesling 2000
Fresh, bright citrussy nose leads to a nice fruity palate. This is very lively and shows good concentration. Very good.

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon 2000
Showing lush fruit, this is a ripe, modern wine with a boiled sweets edge to the nose. Good/very good

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Semillon 2000
An easy drinking Semillon with a bright, fresh nose and lush, ripe fruit on the palate. Good/very good

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Corkscrew Road Chardonnay 2000
Fermented and matured in a mixture of 30% new/70% old French oak, and spends 9 months on the lees. Rich, toasty, nutty nose with some new oak evident. Palate is concentrated, nutty and figgy, with lean, savoury fruit. Very good+

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Ledge Shiraz 1998
Shows a pronounced, minty, menthol-edged nose. The cool-climate palate is rich and minty, with eucalyptus-tinged fruit. Lovely stuff. Very good/excellent

Chain of Ponds Adelaide Hills Amadeus Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
Restrained, leafy blackcurrant fruit on the nose: this is very cool climate in character. Rich fruit on the palate with some tannins underneath. Very good

Tasted May 2001 at the Decanter Rising Stars Fine Wine Encounter

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