In 1925 the winery of Anton and Carl Finkenauer was split as the two brothers wanted to go their own way. Since then there have been two wineries with the same name situated just a few metres away from each. Weingut Anton Finkenauer is a family company offering well made and attractively priced wines with an annual volume of 60,000 bottles.
The grapes were cool fermented to retain the fruity character with a good balance of acidity.
The wonderful balance between sugar and acidity found in this wine, makes it a good example of the wines from the Nahe region. A young, dry, streamlined and fruity wine with just a hint of refreshing spritz on the palate. The perfect accompaniment to seafood, particularly oysters, green Niçoise salads and creamy Camembert.
This small co-operative, founded in 1954, has 110 members and 200 hectares of vineyard in the Haut-Rhin, nine kilometres from Colmar. Their wines are vinified using only their members' grapes, with a focus on expressing the rich diversity of Alsatian soils. Winemaker Nicolas Garde started at the winery in 2004 and his influence continues to be seen in the way the wines improve with each vintage.
The 5.6 hectare Rosacker vineyard is north of Hunawihr, a small village between Ribeauvillé and Riquewihr. This is also where the famous parcel of Clos St Hune is located. It lies 260-330 metres above sea level, facing east/south-east, with heavy, clay soils rich in calcium and magnesium, with limestone pebbles. The vines are on average 35 years old.
Yields were low in 2017 due to the frost, but the quality of the grapes was very good. The harvest started earlier than normal, at the beginning of September.
All of the grapes were harvested by hand. There was a gentle cold settling of the must for 48 hours before fermentation at control temperatures of 16-18°C for three weeks, with selected yeasts. The wine aged for four months in stainless steel tanks on the lees with regular stirring and then some further time resting in tank before being filtered and bottled.
This wine is light yellow in colour with an elegant silver tint. On the nose, there are delicate nuances of lime and grapefruit. It is complex and fresh on the palate, with aromatic hints of citrus fruits with beautifully acidity and a zesty finish.
The Ceres wine brand is the result of a collaboration of brothers Matt and James Dicey. Their grapes are always grown to a high standard. This means a lot of hand care and attention and low yields to ensure concentrated and intensely flavoured grapes. Yields are restricted to a maximum of 6t/ha and all grapes are hand harvested.
To find out more about this excellent wine please click the blue link below.
As the maker puts it: "It takes an unconventional winemaker to make a totally unexpected dry Riesling. One night, Charles was eating Chinese takeout and watching a fight scene in a notorious martial arts film when he had an idea: a killer white wine made to be paired with Asian food. Just like that, Kung Fu Girl was born. And it’s been kicking ass and taking names ever since".
More traditionally put: This wine is made by Charles Smith, a self–taught winemaker who brings his rock and roll spirit to the vineyards of Walla Walla, Washington. As a romantic young man, Charles Smith moved across the world to Denmark to follow his love for his girlfriend at the time. In Scandinavia, he became a recognized manager for rock bands such as The Raveonettes. While travelling on the road with these bands, he developed his passion for wine. In 1999, he moved back to Washington, opened a wine store and became friendly with a French winemaker, later convincing him to move to Walla Walla to make wine together.
Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling grapes comes from Evergreen Vineyard vines, where they stretch across the steep cliffs overlooking the Colombia River. This makes for ideal Riesling growing conditions that rival those in Germany. This wine is made from 100% Riesling grapes, carefully cultivated and pressed at the winery. The wine is barrel-aged for only 2 months (using the sur lie method, ie leaving the wine on its fine lees). Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling is crafted to be approachable and ready to drink the day you buy it.
The wine is a party in a glass. Young and fun, bright balance and tropical fruit notes make this an easy introduction to the world of Riesling. White stone fruit, apricot and white peach aromas with honeysuckle undertones make it a stand out. These flavours are balanced with elements of lime zest, citrus blossom and a floral hint of jasmine.
This wine would pair well with any number of foods. It can very easily be enjoyed on its own but Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Riesling is a match made in heaven with Korean BBQ, spicy curry any kind of Thai food and sushi. Snow crab, lobster, prawns, roasted chicken or grilled salmon would also pair well.
To see an information sheet and tasting note for this wine from the team at Charles Smith Wines, please click on the blue link below.
Awarded 88 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2018 edition review of Australian Riesling (see blue link below).
Dr John Kirk founded Clonakilla vineyard at Murrumbateman, 40 kilometres north of Canberra, in 1971 after his scientific curiosity led him to question why vines were not being grown in this area. His research showed that the soil and climate seemed suited to certain varieties. Clonakilla means 'meadow of the church' and is the name of theDr Kirk's grandfather's farm in County Clare, Ireland. In 1997 Tim Kirk, the fourth of John's six sons, took over responsibility for winemaking. Today, Clonakilla is recognised as one of the leading estates in Australia. Tim was named Gourmet Traveller Winemaker of the Year in 2013.
Riesling has been grown at Clonakilla since 1971, and John Kirk used it to make the Canberra District's first commercial vintage in 1976. The fruit for the 2017 Riesling comes from estate owned vineyards around the winery, planted on fertile soils on a bed of decomposed granite. At 600 metres above sea level, the grapes benefit from a cool, continental climate, with warm days and cool nights that extend the ripening season.
Winter rains set up an ideal growing season which sustained the fruit through a warm summer and classic cool climate ripening period. Harvest took place in March 2017.
The grapes were whole bunch pressed, with the clear juice fermented in stainless steel tanks at low temperatures. The wine was stabilised and bottled three months after picking, in June 2017.
A pale straw green Riesling, with ripe lime, citrus and floral notes paving the way for a crisp, fresh palate. Beautiful natural, mineral acidity gives the wine great texture and length.
Awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2018 edition review of Australian Riesling (see blue link below) .
The story behind clos Clare (sic) is fast becoming a legendary tale and has earned a place in the Clare Valley’s winemaking history. This tiny, two hectare vineyard was originally part of the celebrated Florita vineyard in the Clare Valley subregion of Watervale, famed for producing outstanding dry Riesling. In 1986, Mark, Peter and John Barry purchased the whole Florita vineyard and sold off the small corner of the vineyard to a local artist, Ian Sanders and clos Clare was born. Today’s label is an original design by Ian Sanders. In 2007, Peter and Sue Barry purchased clos Clare, which by now had forged a reputation for producing one of Australia’s finest dry Rieslings. clos Clare is now run by their sons, Tom and Sam, the third generation of the Barry family and grandsons of Jim Barry, a pioneer of Clare Valley winemaking. For outstanding Clare Valley Rieslings, look no further.
In 2016 the Clare Valley had ideal fruit set promising above average yields; then a hot December reduced yield expectations. Rains in late January and early February completely altered the yield forecasts with a 20% surge. Riesling, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon were the standouts.
Located in the prestigious Watervale subregion of the Clare Valley, the vineyard itself is over 70 years old, although the Riesling vines were replanted 46 years ago. Situated in the south-west corner of the former La Florita vineyard, the clos Clare vineyard comprises two hectares. The vines are dry-grown, which is facilitated by the clay content of the soil, as it helps to retain the moisture to nourish the vine. The canopy management techniques used in the vineyard differ according to the orientation of the vine: the north-facing vines are exposed to the sun, while the southfacing vines are protected by the canopy vegetation.
The fruit was hand-picked during the latter part of February and was immediately chilled for 24 hours, prior to whole bunch pressing. The juice was completely racked off its solids after approximately 48 hours and fermented. The fermentation process took place without lees agitation or stirring and once the fermentation was complete, it was racked off its lees. Oxygen was not purposely introduced at any stage, as the wine was made as reductively as possible.
A hand crafted wine showing poise, elegance and character. Delicate aromas of lemons and limes, carry through onto the palate. The palate shows great balance between citrus fruit and the hallmark acidity of the 2016 vintage.
The Watervale Riesling is a stunning accompaniment to shellfish and fish dishes or with Asian influenced cuisine.
This wine is suitable for vegetarians but not vegans.
"Great wine can only come from Italy or California" was the misconception Chateau Ste Michelle’s founding fathers set out to prove wrong when they first broke ground and pioneered the Washington wine region, shortly after the repeal of Prohibition in the USA. They have certainly opened our eyes to some of the wonderful wines that Washington State has to offer. Chateau Ste. Michelle is one of the few premium wineries in the world with two state-of-the-art wineries, one for red and one for white. The whites are made at the Chateau in Woodinville, WA, while the reds are made at their Canoe Ridge Estate winery in Eastern Washington.
To read Chateau Ste Michelle's excellent tasting note and information on this wine please click on the blue link below.
Awarded 90 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2018 edition review of Australian Riesling. (see blue link below) .
Dandelion Vineyards is the venture of self-titled 'typist' Zar Brooks, his winemaking wife Elena and growers Carl Lindner and Brad Rey, with wines made from the Barossa and Eden Valleys, Fleurieu and McLaren Vale. Nick Stock, one of Australia's leading journalists, has described Dandelion as follows: 'Brooks has teamed up with his winemaking wife Elena, a woman whose talents are outweighed only by her tolerance, in an exciting new venture called Dandelion Vineyards. The approach is remarkably simple and sees Elena making wine from a suite of beautiful old vineyards identified by Carl Lindner and Brad Rey across that blessed curve that runs from the Barossa, up through the Eden Valley and Adelaide Hills and down into McLaren Vale.'
Dandelion Vineyards are proven plantings that have stood the test of time, encouraging the humble dandelion amongst the vines as they suppress winter weeds, provide mulch in summer, and proffer their Wishing Clocks in spring to blow off and make the Dandelion wish come true. The Enchanted Garden was planted in 1910 and thrives to this day, a seven acre Eden Valley Vine Garden lovingly tended by Sue and Stuart Woodman.
The 2016/17 growing season was one of the wettest on record with harvest taking place four weeks later than the 2016 vintage. The wet soils combined with a cooler than average spring and early summer meant the vines grew slowly but healthily. Well-timed rains in late January/early February were followed by a return to dry conditions and the beginning of an Indian summer from March to late April which was perfect for ripening grapes and natural acidity.
Whole bunches were hand picked on 9th March then destemmed without crushing the fruit to fill the press exactly. The free-run juice and pressings were fermented separately in small tanks between 11-13°C. The wine was bottled directly with minimal fining and filtration.
This wine is 100% Riesling.
The appearance of this Riesling foretells the pristine quality of its fruit. Classic aromas of citrus zest, lemon foliage and hints of dragon fruit flowers are etched by a clear steely minerality. This is an attractively textural wine displaying the variety's intense purity. Bone-dry, its structure and length is underpinned by bracing acidity.
The 2016 vintage (no longer available) was awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their July 2019 article: Alsace - top Riesling terroirs (see blue link below).
Schlossberg lies above the commune of Kayserberg and is composed of a type of grey granite with a southern aspect. It is almost all terraced as it is extremely steep and is one of the greatest sites in Alsace for Riesling. In 1975, Schlossberg was the first Alsace vineyard to be declared a Grand Cru.
This well-regarded Alsace domaine is run by two brothers, Maurice and Jacky Barthelmé in the village of Wettolsheim, near Colmar. Maurice, who took over here in 1984, is married to the daughter of the late Albert Mann who gave his name to the domaine. It’s not a huge operation: they have 22 hectares in all, but five of these are in five different Grand Cru vineyards and a further two are in lieux-dits. The brothers each have their responsibilities, one in vineyard and one in cellar. Viticulture is organic and they have a minimal intervention approach in the cellar.
This wine presents a yellow-green intense and bursty appearance. On the nose, it is well-balanced, prepossessing, fresh, fine and harmonious. We can find in the aroma bouquet some fresh citrus fruit, bergamot, kumquat, ripe lemon and stewed apple. It is easy to guess the nature of the terroir - granite - which gives this racy typicity and minerality.The palate is very taut, multidimensional and with a mineral element. It confers an originality and unique personality. This wine is harmonious, well balanced and dry with a very long finish.
The 2018 vintage was awarded 92 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their January 2019 edition expert tasting/review of South American Riesling (see blue link below). The most recent vintage available in the UK via the sole importer is the (excellent) 2016!
Doña Paula is a leading, modern winery at the forefront of exploring and investing in new, high quality wine regions in Argentina. Established in 1997, they own all of their vineyards covering 700 hectares. These vineyard sites are located in the best subregions within Mendoza including Ugarteche, Altamira, Gualtallary and Tupungato. The vineyards have always been cultivated using sustainable methods, maximising the true expression of terroir. Continuous innovation in vineyard management ensures Doña Paula produces top quality wines from one year to the next.
The 2016 vintage was characterised by a delayed growing season, reduced yields and very good quality. An extremely cold spring delayed the plant physiology by three weeks on average, with the growing season continuing at cooler temperatures than average years. The result of the El Niño phenomenon was relatively high humidity and frequent rains. However despite challenging conditions, the grapes were healthy and of good quality at harvest producing wines with excellent varietal expression.
The grapes for the Estate Riesling come from the ‘Alluvia Vineyard’ in Gualtallary, Uco Valley. Situated at 1,350 metres above sea level, the subregion of Gualtallary is renowned for producing elegant and aromatic wines. The climate presents warm days and cool nights, with an average temperature variation of 12.5°C. This diurnal temperature swing encourages a long ripening period, producing a greater concentration of flavours in the grapes while retaining balancing acidity. The vines are cultivated using an espalier training method and are drip irrigated using melted snow-water from the mountains. The vines are grown in sandy soils with alluvial and calcareous stones. The vineyards at Doña Paula are managed sustainably.
The grapes were hand-picked during the first week of March. A very careful destemming and pressing process was carried out in order to protect the high quality of the grapes. A cool fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at low temperatures of 12 to 15°C, preserving the purity of fruit.
Expressive aromas of jasmine are complemented by zesty citrus notes. Refreshing and beautifully balanced with a marked mineral streak, it has a complex yet attractively delicate character and a long, lifted finish. A delicious apéritif or a wonderful accompaniment to lightly spiced foods.
Awarded 91 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their July 2019 article: Alsace - top Riesling terroirs (see blue link below).
The Dopff family has been winegrowers since 1574 and still manage the 70-hectare estate near the charming medieval town of Riquewihr. The vineyards are more than 300 metres above sea level, nestled in the foothills of the lower Vosges. As a family of pioneers, they were responsible for the use of the stemmed wine bottles, which today distinguish Alsace wines from other regions. In 1900, tenth generation Julien Dopff was so impressed by the Champagne tastings held in Paris' World Exhibition, he learnt the art of winemaking in Champagne for two years before returning to Alsace. After WW II Julien Dopff strongly believed that a Crémant made from local grape varieties and reflecting the terroir of Alsace should be produced and protected. In 1976, together with five other producers, he finally obtained official recognition for Crémant d'Alsace as an AOC.
2014 was characterised by a very early spring, which resulted in an early start to the growing cycle. The weather was warm and dry during the late spring and early summer, however wet and mild weather during the latter parts of the summer slowed down the vine’s development. A warm and dry September enabled the grapes to reach maturity. The wines are fresh and crisp with beautiful balance.
Schoenenbourg means beautiful hill and is one of the most prestigious Grand Cru classified vineyards in Alsace. Located North of Riquewihr, the vineyard runs along the rather steep south and south-eastern flanks of the hillside, at an altitude of 265 to 380 metres above sea-level. The Dopff au Moulin Schoenenbourg vineyard covers 8.8 hectares. The vines are grown in water-retaining subsoils of keuper marl, dolomite and gypsum, which are rich in fertilising agents, overlaid with fine layers of quaternary siliceous gravel, Vosges sandstone and muschelkalk (shellbearing limestone). Pruned according to the Guyot method with green harvests and meticulous canopy management to ensure good light penetration and air flow.
Whole bunches were gently pneumatically pressed without crushing. Static racking of the must was followed by a slow, temperature controlled fermentation in stainless steel, preserving the purity of fruit. After the fermentation, the wine was stored in old oak casks on its fine lees for several months, adding subtle complexity.
An elegant and expressive wine delivering notes of passion fruit, grapefruit and pineapple enveloped in a rich, full-bodied and harmonious palate. Candied citrus flavours and a zippy acidity lead to a long finish.
This wine is suitable for vegans and vegetarians.
Jochen Dreissigacker has caused a considerable stir both in his native Germany and abroad, winning high praise and points wherever his wines are sold. His 21 hectares of vineyards are based in the Rheinhessen which is currently undergoing what might be termed a 'Rheinhessen revival' with Jochen at its forefront. From the 2010 vintage, Jochen's wines all have organic certification and he also uses Biodynamic methods for much of his estate (although has chosen not to be certified). He reduced the yields in the vineyard and identified the best parcels of vines in order to vinify each separately. As expected of an organic estate, his approach in the cellar is as natural as possible, using only wild yeasts to ferment the must and harvesting only fully ripe grapes (rather than chaptalising, or adding 'süss-reserve' to sweeten the wines after vinification for the Auslese styles).
Jochen's approach in the winery is simple: to intervene as little as possible. Low yields and careful selection in the vineyard ensures excellent fruit. The estate has 21 hectares under vine, 55% of which are Riesling. Soils are a mix of loess and marl.
Due to warm, damp weather, vintage 2014 was a challenging one. Bud break started in early April during a warm, dry start to spring. The flowering period was slightly earlier than average, with great weather providing a good fruit set. An overabundance of rain in July and August (three times the normal amount in some areas) resulted in prolific growth in the vineyards, requiring a lot of canopy management. Despite all the wet weather, the grapes stayed healthy with good must weights. A perfect start to September took an unexpected turn right before harvest, and rain forced the picking to be done very quickly, with most fruit at the winery by the end of the first week of October. Quantity was on par with the ten-year average, and quality was very good thanks to attention to detail and hard work in the vineyards.
The grapes were harvested by hand and the yield was 48 hectolitres per hectare. Maceration lasted up to 18 hours. 90% of the juice underwent spontaneous fermentation with wild yeasts in stainless steel tanks for four weeks at 16-18°C, with the other 10% in barrel. No chaptalisation took place and no 'süss-reserve' was added.
A clear, pale lemon wine. Spicy and fresh, with a lovely minerality on the nose. The very dry 2014 Riesling shows well integrated acidity and finishes with mouthwatering grapefruit flavours.
Brothers-in-law Daniel Chaffey Hartwig and Theo Engela are the latest generation of the Chaffey family to ply their vinous trade in Australia. The original Chaffey brothers (Canadian Hydro Engineers) were true iconoclasts. They arrived in Australia in 1886 and proceeded (along with a number of their descendants) to make an indelible mark on the Australian wine landscape.
"This straw-coloured rascal is a three way blend of Riesling, Gewurztraminer and the rare Weisser Herold (aka Kerner), all out of the one old vineyard. It's co-fermented, at first playing it's Riesling card with lime florals and aromatics, though the more exotic gewurztraminer comes out of it's shell as you go They do, perhaps, add to this wine's fabulous texture: chalky, pithy and peppery/spicy with a lingering, mouth watering result. One of this summer's surprise aromatic whites” - Tony Love (National Wine Writer news.com.au)
Riesling 34%, Gewurtztraminer 33%, Kerner 32%
To see an information sheet and tasting note for this wine that has been produced by Chaffey Bros, please click on the blue link below.
Eroica is a labour of love for two of the world's great Riesling producers, Germany's Dr Loosen and Washington State's Chateau Ste. Michelle. Named after Beethoven's Third Symphony, Eroica reflects not only its variety and site, but also its heritage: bold and forward from its Washington roots, elegant and refined from German inspiration. This Riesling offers sweet lime and tangerine aromas with subtle mineral notes, and a mouth-watering acidity that is beautifully balanced by the generously fruity Washington grapes.
Felton Road's story is one of refusal to compromise. The estate is fully organic and uses biodynamic viticulture (Demeter certified) ensuring that fruit arrives at the winery as pure as it can be. The entire estate comes as close to true sustainability as is possible. There is a commitment to hands off winemaking: gravity flow, wild yeasts, wild malolactic, an avoidance of fining and filtration all help preserve the wine's expression of its terroir. The result is wine that express the authenticity and complexity of their unique vineyards.
Please click on the blue link below to see an excellent tasting and information sheet on this wine by the winemakers themselves.