Riesling is one of the world’s most noble grape varieties. It achieves its most intense expression in cool regions that ensure long, slow ripening. This allows for aromatic development and retains fresh acidity. The largest area planted to Riesling is in Germany, followed by Australia, New Zealand, Austria, America and Alsace.
Typically, Riesling has floral notes, stone fruit aromas and racy acidity. It can be made dry or with varying amounts of residual sugar, unlike Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc that are almost always made dry. Sweetness in Riesling accentuates its fruit flavours and balances its acidity but for consumers it is frequently hard to tell if a wine is dry, off dry or sweet. Riesling is almost never made or aged in oak barrels and thus never shows any woody or vanilla flavours. One flavour that is often attributed to Riesling is “petrol” or “kerosene” when the grapes are grown in dry, sunny climates or in poor, rocky soils. In most Rieslings such notes become increasingly apparent with age as the other aromas fade.
The great home for Riesling is in Germany where there are many different styles: from dry, almost austere Rheingau Riesling, with its backbone of acidity, to fruity, pure Mosel Riesling. Wines without residual sugar – up to 9 grams per liter - are labeled “trocken”.
Riesling is gaining gradual success in the New World and comes in a wide variety of styles: bone-dry with lime fruit paired with kerosene notes to residual sweetness and primary fruit flavours.
- 2017 Deep RootsRiesling Trocken Rheinhessen0.75l White€8.30 €6.86Thanks to the warm 2017 vintage, this wine has a full expression of Riesling with lovely fresh aromas of citrus fruit, blossom and pears. Created by three young, talented winemakers in the Rheinhessen, including our friend Jochen Dreissigacker, the grapes are fermented in stainless steel tanks at low temperatures for three weeks and then aged for several months before bottling. Pure and fine on the palate, the 2017 has ripe fruit and great acidity that gives the wine good balance and structure. A very versatile wine which goes with light goods, salads and seafoods; a great favourite of ours also as an aperitif.
- Organic Riesling Trocken Rheinhessen0.75l WhiteBio€11.20 €9.26Jochen Dreissigacker has become a driving force in the quality revolution in the Rheinhessen and like his mentor, Klaus Peter Keller, his rise to fame and quality has been impressive, especially for the dry, pure Rieslings that he makes. Working with the mineral elements in the vineyard, the local climate and Germany’s greatest grape variety, his wines have great drive and acidity. Although the vineyards were hit by hail in August, the remaining harvest was excellent, with picking starting very early in the beginning of September. This wine has great balance between ripe fruit and acidity, lovely aromas of peaches and peachstones, fine concentration on the palate and lovely structure. A wine that is drinking well now but will keep for several years.
- 2017 Château BeláRiesling0.75l WhiteNew€14.25 €11.78Château Belá is an ancient property owned by the aunt of Valeska Müller, the wife of Egon. Situated in southern Slovakia on the banks of the Danube River the estate has a long winemaking history. The Romans planted the first vines and today Riesling grapes are grown on the hills below the castle and vinified by Miroslav Petrech and Egon Müller, two celebrated winemakers from Germany and the Slovak Republic. The 2017 Riesling is very fresh and pure with bold flavours of citrus, honeysuckle and fresh herbs. It is refreshingly light in alcohol and beautifully balanced between sweet, pure aromas and a lively, dry taste.