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Riesling

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Cave De Hunawihr Riesling Grand Cru Rosacker 2017 (1x75cl)

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 260-330m above sea level, facing east/south-east, with heavy, clay soils rich in calcium and magnesium, with limestone pebbles. The vines are 35 years old on average.

All of the grapes were harvested by hand. There was a gentle cold settling of the must for 48 hours before a long, slow fermentation for four 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.

A pale, clear yellow with elegant silver tint. The nose has delicate nuances of lime and grapefruit. Complex and fresh, the palate has the same delicate hints of citrus fruits with beautifully acidity and a zesty finish.

£17.55

Clonakilla Canberra District Riesling 2017 (1x75cl)

Awarded 88 points and Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their April 2018 edition review of Australian Riesling  (see blue link below).

Clonakilla Riesling 2017 - April 2018 Decanter review

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.

£25.10

Clos Clare Watervale Riesling 2016 (1x75cl)

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) .

Clos Clare Watervale Riesling 2016 - April 2018 Decanter review

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.

£20.60

Dandelion Vineyards Enchanted Garden of the Eden Valley Riesling 2016 (1x75cl)

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 Enchanted Riesling 2016 - April 2018 Decanter review

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.

Whole bunches were hand picked on the 11th of March then de-stemmed without crushing the fruit to fill the press exactly. Juice from the free run and pressings were separated and fermented in small tanks between 11 and 13°C. The wine was bottled directly with minimal fining and filtration.

The appearance of this Riesling foretells the pristine and unalloyed quality of its fruit. Classic aromatics 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 austere acidity.

£12.80

Dandelion Wonderland Of The Eden Valley Riesling 2016 (1x 75cl)

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) .

Dandelion Wonderland Riesling 2016 - April 2018 Decanter review

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.'

Colin Kroehn has tended his Eden Valley Riesling for 67 of his 87 years. The Wonderland of the Eden Valley is made entirely from his vineyard which was planted in 1912 and produces excellent fruit. He encourages the growth of Dandelion amongst the vines as they suppress the winter weeds and provide much mulch in the summer.

2015 was an early vintage following a cool and dry growing season and timely rainfall at veraison. These conditions preserved bright colour, fruit purity and the natural acidity of the wine.

Whole bunches from Dandelion's oldest vineyard, 101 years old in 2012, were hand picked in the cool of the early morning on 16th March and destemmed in small batches without crushing. The free run juice was fermented in small stainless steel tanks between 11°C and 14°C. It was bottled directly without fining or filtration to capture the essence of the vineyard.

Star bright in colour, the appearance of this Riesling foretells the pristine and unalloyed quality of its fruit. Wonderland boasts classic Riesling aromatics of citrus zest, lemon foliage and hints of dragon fruit flowers. On the palate it is an attractively textural Riesling, displaying the variety’s intense purity. Bone dry, its structure and length is underpinned by austere acidity.

£22.20

Darenberg The Stump Jump Riesling Marsanne Sauvignon 2016 (1x 75cl)

The nose is filled with passion fruit lemon and lime characters. With crisp citrus peach and nectarine flavours alongside honeysuckle and a hint of melon.

£9.45

Domaine Riefle Alsace Grand Cru Steinert Riesling 2015 (1x 75cl)

We also highly recommend the rest of the Domaine Rieflé range, click here. 

For our article on Alsace, Pinot Gris and Domaine Rieflé, click here.

The Rieflé family is deeply rooted in the history and culture of the Rhine. Six generations have built the family's winemaking tradition since it began in 1850. From the 1980s, Annick and Jean-Claude Rieflé (and their team of dedicated winemakers) made the most of the new opportunities created by the EU and globalisation, introducing the domaine's Alsatian wines to new consumers. They were joined at the domaine by their sons, Thomas and Paul, in 2009 and 2010. Thomas manages the vineyard and Paul is responsible for building the business.

They developed and certified the entire vineyard in accordance with Organic Agriculture specifications. As well as respecting the soil, flora, fauna and health in general, Organic Agriculture is also a useful means of bringing out the different characteristics of Domaine Rieflé's numerous terroirs. As part of the domaine's humanist approach and support for the local community, manual work is outsourced to a local association for professional reintegration.

Alsace white wines can confuse the consumer by inadvertently concealing their sweetness level. This Riesling has a residual sugar level of 3.5g/litre and is thus fully dry.

Elsewhere, rather then describe the wine ourselves, we can do no better than hand you to the producers and their excellent data sheet (see blue link below).

Domaine Riefle Alsace Grand Cru Steinert Riesling 2015 fiche technique

£22.00

Domaine Schlumberger Riesling Les Princes Abbes 2006 (1x 75cl)

A distinguished nose dominated by mature fruity scents of citrus and candied lemons and floral hints. Delicate and fresh. Fresh and well balanced. Delicately spicy with citrus fruits candied lemon and hints of ginger and a long finish. Delicately spicy with citrus fruits candied lemon and hints of ginger and a long finish. Food Matching Seafood Caviar Sushi Fois Grais Pork Chicken Veal Medium Spiced Curry Chinese and Thai Dishes.

£13.45

Dreissigacker Organic Estate Riesling 2014 (1x75cl)

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.

£13.65

Eroica Riesling, Chateau Ste Michelle 2015 (1x 75cl)

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.

£20.15

Felton Road Block 1 Riesling 2015 (1x75cl)

The forthcoming 2016 vintage has been awarded 93 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter (www.decanter.com) in their January 2018 edition article: The Most Exciting Wines of 2017 (see blue link below).

Felton Rd Block 1 Riesling 2016 - January 2018 Decanter review

However, the UK importer are not yet releasing the 2016 vintage, preferring to sell through the 2015 first. We are offering the 2015 here and will bring you the 2016 as soon as we can.

Beginning with meticulous site selection and vineyard design started in 1991, Felton Road's story is one of refusal to compromise. A strict 100% estate policy with fully organic and biodynamic viticulture (Demeter certified) ensures that our fruit arrives at the winery as pure as it can be, while our entire estate comes as close to true sustainability as is possible. A commitment to hands off winemaking: gravity flow, wild yeasts, wild malo, an avoidance of fining and filtration all help preserve the wine's expression of its terroir. The result is Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir which accurately express the authenticity and complexity of our unique vineyards.

Felton Road farms four properties totaling 32 ha in the Bannockburn sub-region of Central Otago. Block 1 is a north facing slope immediately west of Block 3 on The Elms vineyard.  Meticulous summer management of a single vertical shoot positioned (VSP) canopy ensures even and early fruit maturity. Shoot thinning, shoot positioning, leaf plucking, bunch thinning and harvest are all carried out by hand to ensure optimum quality fruit. Cover crops are planted between rows to assist in vine balance and to improve soil health and general biodiversity

Riesling from Block 1 was carefully hand-picked followed by whole bunch pressing. The juice was settled overnight followed by a 3 week fermentation with indigenous yeasts. The fermentation was stopped by chilling to balance the high natural acidity with residual sweetness of 67g/L, resulting in the low alcohol of 9.0%. The wine rested on fine lees with minimal processing before bottling in mid-September to highlight the delicate Riesling characters.

Ripe stone fruits, peach and honeydew melon are married to an aromatic infusion of fennel, lemongrass and ginger with distinct florality. The wave of sweet fruit builds in power to reveal an exotic midpalate richness. Although sweet up front, the inviting and fruit-laden mouthfeel is illuminated by a crisp and mineral finish. Surprisingly refreshing with an engaging, lingering intensity and impeccable balance.

£28.00

Framingham Select Riesling 2013 (1x 75cl)

A very elegant wine with incredibly fresh mineral and lime notes on the nose. The palate is rich with more lime and lemon zest notes. Mouth-watering acidity balances the sweetness perfectly.

£15.35

Framingham Select Riesling 2016 (6x75cl)

The 2015 vintage was rated number 21 in Decanter's 'Most Exciting Wines of 2016' (www.decanter.com) in their January 2017 edition (see blue link below).

 

Framingham Select Riesling 2015 - January 2017 Decanter review

 

Delicate aromatics reminiscent of beeswax, raspberry, orange blossom and green tea, with some gentle stone-like mineral tones. Elegant, silky palate with low alcohol making the wine light on its feet, and great tension between sugar and acidity. Rich and pure flavours of orange citrus and red summer fruit compote along with crème anglaise carry through into a very long, stony, almost crunchy, mineral finish. Retained carbon dioxide from fermentation adds liveliness.

£97.20
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