An elegant cool-climate style, Dawson & James is a top expression of single vineyard, Tasmanian Chardonnay. The grapes are sourced from the Meadowbank vineyard, a unique and protected site on the upper Derwent River. Rich, yet texturally complex, with bright acidity and impeccable balance, it ranks among the finest examples of contemporary Australian Chardonnay.
Trophy at the Tasmanian Wine Show 2017, thanks to its super-intense bouquet and super-long palate. Sometimes Chardonnays can wear their acidity on their sleeve, but here it couples with a complex display of stone and citrus fruit with a garland of quality oak, finishing with bright (not excessive) acidity. Drink to 2027.
97 points, Wine Companion, September 2017
Superlative chiselled chardonnay, unwinding on the palate in mineral-clad notches of autumnal and stone fruits, toasted nuts and oatmeal, every detail embedded and driven long by sensitively handled reductive tension and juicy, cool climate acidity -- the type that can't be bought in bags. Despite the lowish alcohol (12.9%) on the label, the ripeness is prime-time, and nothing about this is anorexic.
97 points, Wine Companion
Bright, light to medium-yellow colour with a rich lemon, grapefruit - pith and juice - aroma, fruit-driven. The palate is intense and bright, delicately-framed yet powerful and driving, with some firmness and very good length. Generous flavour; a bigger and more overt style, but still youthful and refined.
96 points, Real Review, January 2019
Light yellow hue. The bouquet is complex and toasty from oak, but fruit and artifact nuances are well harmonised. It's flavoursome but also high in acidity, which tends to lean the palate out a little. Superb flavour and balance, length and discretion. Very stylish. A wine for the future.
96 points, Real Review, January 2018
Bright, light yellow hue and a clean, fresh, vibrant aroma -- toasted nuts -- the palate delicate and refined, tight and restrained with lively acidity. Deep and lively and full of flavour. A fine, tight wine with full-on Chardonnay character.
96 points, Real Review, January 2017
Best in Show - DWWA 2019
Tasting notes: In a great year in general for Chardonnay wines in our Best In Show selection, this Tasmanian example impressed our judges with its assurance, its grain and its darting yet ripe and resonant cool-climate style. It's a bright green-gold in colour. A little reduction when first poured soon clears to reveal a tempting spectrum of lemon, dessert apple and early-season nectarine fruits with understated creamy wealth from its barrel-fermentation. On the palate, it is ample and round yet fresh and vivid, the purity of its Derwent Valley origins singing out without any winery forcing. A Tasmanian thoroughbred which underscores the potential of its site. Drink 2019-2024