"One of the finest estate wineries in Australia. Main Ridge Estate is a seriously good producer. Visiting and tasting from the barrels in Nat's tiny underground cellar is reminiscent of a Burgundy grower's "cave". This parallel works in describing his Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, which have a rare finesse and purity to them. They are delicate, restrained, long-living wines in a classic Burgundy style."
Huon Hooke. Sydney Morning Herald 8 June 2000.
"My congratulations to Main Ridge on their superb Chardonnay being accorded Gold Star status with this edition - a tasting of 9 successive vintages of this exemplary wine demonstrated the extreme quality achieved by this label, with nary a hint of flatness or inelegance in even the oldest vintages. Well done that maker!"
...extract from the preface to the 19th. Edition of Robin Bradley's Australian Wine Vintages 2002.
"Of the tens of thousands of table wines made in Australia today, I have allocated the highest possible Five Star Rating to a mere twenty. These are the benchmarks, the Grand Cru standards – the wines against which all others can be measured."
Main Ridge Estate Half Acre Pinot Noir is one of these wines and is described as…..
"The most sensual, perfumed and elegant of Victorian pinot noir, this deep, alluring and long-living wine typically builds in structure and depth of flavour with time in the bottle."
...extract from the Australian Wine Annual 2010 Jeremy Oliver
Bright straw green; as usual, a very complex and strongly textured chardonnay, reflecting 100% wild yeast, barrel fermentation, and 100 % mlf, all adding up to rich, creamy, nutty characters joining the nectarine and white peach fruit. Screwcap.
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2011 95/100
Consistently excellent and ageworthy, Main Ridge is one of the Mornington Peninsula’s flagship chardonnays. The 08 has a seamless nose and palate combining nectarine, melon,fig syrup and lightly buttery characters with classy, subtle oak in lovely harmony. It has a deliciously plump mouthfeel, with depth of flavour and tight structure.
Ralph Kyte- Powell The Age Epicure July 2010 5 Stars
Few pinot noirs and chardonnays in the world match the purity and finesse of those made by Nat and Rosalie White at Main Ridge Estate, Mornington Peninsula. They’re subtle, harmonious wines, built on deep, sweet, pure fruit flavours and barely revealing the hand of the winemaker. The rich but delicate 2008 chardonnay combines pristine cool- climate varietal flavour with the texture and complexity that could only come from full barrel fermentation and maturation – but the flavour components are inseparably combined. The equally glorious pinot 2008 starts with ripe varietal flavour; then as you sip the silky texture builds and the assertive, fine tannins declare it as a classic for long cellaring.
As always Nat White produces truly magnificent chardonnay—rich with loads of creamy, leesy texture and yet there’s a certain subtlety and restraint—it’s a yin and yang wine, perfectly balanced. Layers of citrus and lemon curd, fig paste and nectarines flood the mouth, spice notes, roundness partly from incisive oak integration; persistent, excellent length. An addictive drink.
Age Epicure March 2010 Jane Faulkner
Hemingway’s description of wine as “ one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection” captures Main Ridge Chardonnay-a wine brought to its current beauty over many decades by Nat and Rosalie White. The combination of vineyard work aimed at perfecting berry flavours, and sensitive winemaking, aimed at capturing flavour and building texture, delivers a full, silky, delicate chardonnay that demands, always, just one more sip. It’s a beautiful wine and from experience, evolves well in the cellar.
Chris Shanahan The Canberra Times Feb. 2011
Main Ridge Chardonnay is out of the Mornington Peninsula mainstream, less obvious than many but a masterpiece of subtelty. The '09 has nectarine, herb and barley sugar aromas with creamy notes and subtle integration of oak. The palate is finely textured, seamless, beautifully harmonious , lingering and elegant.
Ralph Kyte- Powell The Age Epicure March 2011 5 stars
Main Ridge Estate’s finest chardonnay yet is finely balanced, stylishly focused and artfully complete. Its spicy fragrance of white peach, melon, mango and faintly smoky oak reveals waxy, clove and cinnamon-like complexity lifted by a heady floral fragrance. It’s supple and elegant, long and fluffy, with a generous but graceful presence of pure fruit, newish, nutty and creamy oak that finishes quite savoury, with lingering notes of spice and meatiness.
Jeremy Oliver The Australian Wine Annual 2013 96/100
What separates a so-so chardonnay from one costing $55? It starts with the quality of the grapes– meaning an appropriate climate, site and vine age, backed by diligent vineyard work to achieve perfect grape ripeness. Then comes the winemaking– a tricky affair with chardonnay as the techniques ( barrel fermentation, secondary malolactic fermentation and prolonged ageing on yeast lees) all have the potential to overwhelm the grape flavour. In Main Ridge, the winemaking inputs support the glorious grapefruit and nectarine varietal flavours on a plush but very fine, boyant and ethereal palate. It’s an exceptional wine capable of extended bottle ageing.
Chris Shanahan The Canberra Times Feb. 2012
Nat and Rosalie White’s pioneering Mornington Peninsula vineyard consistently produces great chardonnay. These are not the Peninsula’s most powerful but their finesse puts them among the regions best. The 2010 says it all: gently fragrant nectarine and melon-rind characters; soft creamy, nutty and earthy elements; silky texture and satisfying richness; and a lingering, aromatic finish.These wines also age well, evolving mellow complexity while retaining their appetising freshness.
Ralph Kyte-Powell The Age Epicure Mar. 2012 5 stars
Nat White crafts lovely wine. He has worked his special patch of Mornington Peninsula land at Main Ridge for more than three decades and the result is a wine of great texture and palate weight thanks to the perfect amalgamation of leesy character and creaminess alongside spicy wood, yet the oak is beautifully integrated. There’s opulence and complexity that‘s reigned in by fine natural acidity, citrus and stonefruit. Classy. Enjoy with roast chicken.
Jane Faulkner The Saturday Age March 2012
Half Acre Pinot Noir 2007
Given that Nat and Rosalie White's Main Ridge Estate at Red Hill is one of the Peninsula's coolest and oldest sites ( it was established in 1975 ) , it’s a testament to the couple’s vision and persistence that their pinot noir ranks amongst the very best in Australia. With its purity of fruit, subtle spices and overall balance, this is classic, cool-climate pinot at its best.
Australian Financial Review May 2009 Phillip Rich
A heady perfume of violets, red flowers and fresh dark berries, juicy plums and forest floor backed by complex suggestions of pepper,musky spices and suede leather.Sumptuous and forward, intensely concentrated and vibrant, it’s somehowalmost ethereal in the lightness of its impact on the palate, with a sappy, genuinely luscious but silky texture underpinned by smooth, fine grained tannins. It finishes with exemplary length and persistence.
The Australian Wine Annual 2010 Jeremy Oliver 96 / 100
A regular on Qantas 1st. Class, fruit in the raspberry / mulberry and dark cherry spectrum but no plum.
Australian Wine Vintages 2010 Robert Geddes 96 / 100
Deeper colour than usual; a totally delicious array of vibrant red fruits with fine-grained,spicy tannins adding appropriate authority; great balance and length.
Australian Wine Companion 2010 James Halliday 96 / 100
....showed terrific promise tasted in barrel in Jan. 2008. Tastes of the finished wine in February and May this year (2009) confirm it as one of the finest ever made in Australia, in my opinion – a silky, succulent, fine – boned wine of rare dimension, with the capacity to age for many years.
Sunday Canberra Times May 2009 Chris Shanahan.
Half Acre Pinot Noir 2008
Along long lived vintage for Half Acre, this is a perfumed red-fruited wine which juxtaposes delicate red cherry and strawberry fruit with firm French oak. Fine grippy tannins are prominent, but the fruit ultimately wins out in the end.
Wine 100 April 2010 Tyson Stelzer 93/100
Half Acre Pinot Noir 2009
This is simply a magnificent pinot. Medium- deep purple- red in colour, it has intense, super- ripe, sweet black- fruit aromas with a floral high note. Its flavour is very intense and concentrated with masses of sweet fruit to taste, plus a subtle but persuasive line of fine grained tannins providing the backbone. Very full- on, powerful and incredibly long on the finish. Sheer magic from winemaker Nat White, an established master of the genre. Drink now to 10- plus years. 13.5% alcohol.
Houn Hooke Sydney Morning Herald June 2011 97/100
Nat and Rosalie White were among the first to plant vines on the Mornington Peninsula ( in 1975 ), their property being landlocked by gum trees, meaning everything had to be carried in. Pinot noir was not the first variety trialled, but soon came into focus. Excellent colour, a perfumed bouquet of gently spicy plums leads into a beautifully balanced and structured palate, the line and length impeccable, French oak does no more than support the clarion quality of the fruit. 13.5% alc, screwcap.
Drink to 2018
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion Feb. 2011
This splendidly complex, supple pinot noir from one of the region’s oldest vineyards is delicious now but cellaring will reveal even more depth and subtlety.
Max Allen Gourmet Traveller March 2011
Sex and wine share a sense of anticipation driven by sensual cues. And if any wine can be sexy, surely it’s pinot noir. No other variety seduces so completely-the shimmering, limpid, crimson colour; the sweet, floral, musky, earthy, savoury aroma; and the juicy, slurpy, slippery, firm-but-tender flood of liquid on our palates. Indeed for the sufficiently temperate, there’s every hope of enjoying both in one night. Our Valentine’s choice is Main Ridge Half Acre 2009
Chris Shanahan The Canberra Times Wine of The Week 9 Feb. 2011
The mature Main Ridge Mornington Peninsula vineyard provides great pinot noir. Floral and herb-garden threads introduce the '09, but a rich core of cherry and beetrooty pinot fruit, dressed in restrained, classy oak provides understated power. Complex flavour,satiny texture and soft tannins give it lovely flow across the palate.
Ralph Kyte-Powell The Age Epicure March 2011 5 stars
Very ripe , with fresh, finely integrated oak and a spicy, rather meaty, earthy and leathery bouquet of dark plums, cherries and berries whose undertones of cinnamon clove and nutmeg reveal a hint of licorice. Its sumptuous and deeply layered with plush fruit underpinned by firmish, velvet smooth tannins, finishing with charming freshness, a savoury aspect and faintly herbal, tobaccoey nuances.
The Australian Wine Annual 2012 Jeremy Oliver 93/100
I love everything about this wine: its perfume is a heady mix of fresh cherry fruit and there’s a hint of menthol and savoury cedary spice mixed with pine-forest coolness and aromatics- very seductive. Super-silky tannins, very fine, long, plush and medium bodied, with the oak just a support act. Legendary winemaker Nat White always teases out fineness in his pinot noirs and subsequently crafts some of the most beautiful wines in Australia.
The Sydney Morning Herald May 2011 Jane Faulkner
Half Acre Pinot Noir 2010
The Half Acre of Main Ridge is just that, a tiny pocket producing one of the Peninsula’s most celebrated pinot noirs. 2010 will rank among the greats, slowly blossoming into something quite magnificent over a decade and perhaps two. This is a beguilingly beautiful and elegant pinot of pronounced structure and savoury complexity, layered with brambles, cherry kernel, dried herbs and woodspice over red cherry , strawberry and raspberry fruit. It takes air and time for its delightful rose petal perfume to emerge, and it will take years to fully uncurl. It has the spice to go the distance, thanks to a firm, upright tannin structure providing a fine grip to the finish.
Tyson Stelzer Drink 2018 – 2025 95/100
Medium to full red colour, purple rim. Bright fruit aromas, some "brandies cherry", strawberry and a nice lick of toasty oak and a little chaff. Savory and smooth, medium- bodied and has good intensity and freshness. Lively in mouth. Nice meaty complexities. "Roasting pan" aromas. A really delicious Pinot with multi-faceted aromas and flavours.
Huon Hooke. Sydney Morning Herald July 2012. 96/100
Nat and Rosalie White’s flagship red reveals a subtle,sensuous, ever-changing face of pinot. The style evolved over many decades as the Whites fine-tuned vineyard management and winemaking. From 2007, the pinots were not only wild-yeast fermented, but bottled without filtering or fining – as Nat White learned to produce bright, clear wines in barrel after visits to Burgundy, pinot’s heartland. On opening the 2010 appears tight and tannic. Then over time, the beautiful layers of pinot fruit characters come through on a supple, deeply layered sensuous palate, framed by those fine firm tannins.
Chris Shanahan The Canberra Times Feb.2012 5 stars
Everything you would expect of this great vineyard from this great vintage. Heady, floral and spicy, its deep aromas of red and black cherries, fresh and faintly smoky cedary oak and lifted by musky hints of red rose petals and spice. Deeply flavored and supremely elegant, its gentle presence of translucent cherry and berry flavour, fine-grained oak and dusty, pliant tannins culminates in a tightly-focused, fresh and savoury finish of exceptional length and harmony.
Jeremy Oliver. The Australian Wine Annual 2013 97 points
Bright mid-garnet; red fruits, florals and spicy notes mingle with restraint on the bouquet; the palate is fresh, taut and generous,with vibrant acidity, silky tannins and an expansive peacocks tail of flavour on full display; time will reward patient collaring, but there is much to like about this as a young wine.
James Halliday. Australian Wine Companion 2012 95 points
Nat White’s pinot reflects his deep,thoughtful personality. It’s well-structured and intense with a profound bouquet of dark cherries and damson plums. The sweet-savoury palate is deeply flavoured;the finish is sustained by a core of sinewy tannins, ensuring its graceful evolution.
Peter Bourne Qantas Jan. 2013
The Acre Pinot Noir 2009
Clear red-purple; 100% destemmed, 18 days on skins then 18 months in new, 1-and 2-year-old French barriques; a totally delicious mouthful of pinot, serenely silky and supple, with plum and cherry fruit in more or less equal proportions. Cries out “drink me tonight”. To 2016
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2012 96/100
Artfully balanced,very restrained and reserved, this faintly confectionary young pinot is likely to build depth and structure with time. Its sweet bouquet of raspberries, red cherries, berries and fresh floral notes knits tightly with cedar/vanilla oak, revealing faintly meaty notes. It’s round and juicy, with a luscious, sweetly-fruited core of red fruits finely integrated with supple tannins and finished with fresh, soft acids and lingering hints of fennel.
The Australian Wine Annual 2012 Jeremy Oliver 93/100
The Acre Pinot Noir 2010
Sweet cherry fruit, plum confiture and seductive Asian spice accent on the bouquet; the palate is soft, supple and fine- boned, with a dominant soft side belying the undercurrent of structure that is sure to see this wine evolve with grace.
James Halliday. Australian WineCompanion 2012 94/100