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At Kumeu River wines, our winemaking philosophy can be summarised in a single word. Quality. From the vines to the wineglass, every drop of Kumeu River wine is a blend of tradition, innovation, and dedication to both the science and the art and of winemaking.
Kumeu River's Chardonnays are our most recognised wine and have received international accolades and awards. We have invested heavily in the development of our Chardonnays over the past three decades, and it is very rewarding to see them continue to gain recognition and respect from highly regarded wine judges and reviewers.
An important part of the winemaking process of our best Chardonnays is barrel fermentation in a blend of new and old French oak barrels. This process draws out the flavour nuances that are so crucial to these fine wine styles. Only indigenous wild yeasts are used to further enhance the texture and complexity and this is also the case with our tank fermented Chardonnays and Pinot Gris.
Pinot Noir and Merlot are initially fermented with wild yeast for an extended period in stainless steel tanks before being matured in oak barrels to enhance the development of bouquet and soften the tannin structure of the palate.
Although always common in red wines, malolactic fermentation was not usually practiced in white wine making 30 years ago. Michael Brajkovich introduced this style of fermentation in the early 1980's. It is a natural process which biologically reduces wine acidity and complexes the flavour. The result is a much better acid balance and improved drinkability. Winemaking has been a part of the Brajkovich family history for more than half a century. Our winery has evolved over this time to produce a range of varieties that are reflective of the natural attributes of our land and also our family's dedication to producing wines of quality and value. We trust that you'll enjoy drinking our wines as much as we enjoy making them!