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Wine Reviews - Riesling
2007 & 2008 vintages
by Sue Courtney
Last updated 6 Mar 2016

Although some of these tasting notes may be found elsewhere on this site, this page brings together most of my Riesling notes, listed alphabetically by Producer. Click here for rating systems and abbreviations.

[younger] [2012/2011/2010/2009] [2008] [2007] [2006/2005] [2004] [2003] [2002] [2001] [2000 and older] [index]

2008 Vintage [top] [index]

Astrolabe Discovery Marlborough Grovetown Riesling 2008 (sc) A light gold colour, it seems reminiscent of lemon pith on the nose. It presents itself as a dry Riesling, because even though it has over 12 grams per litre of residual sugar, it has high acidity and low pH. There's a cheesy character coming through the austere backbone and it's a little astringent too. It's one of those wines that really needs some age to blossom. 12.5% alc. $16. 12Nov2009.

Astrolabe Voyage Marlborough Dry Riesling 2008 (sc) Citrine in hue with a tantalising scent of honey, oranges, flowers and pollen. Bright acidity indicates this is still a baby, with a long way to go, yet the rich weighty palate says, 'I'm grown up already.' It's fresh and rich with nuances of spice and a huge tingle of zest on the finish. I can see this hanging in there for quite some time and it won't disappoint in another three years time 6.5g/L residual sugar. 13% alc. 6.5 g/l rs. 13% alc. $21.99. 15May2011.

Black Estate Omihi Riesling 2008 (sc) Slightly herbaceous with overripe apples on nose - quite sweet smelling too - like a green apple, spice crusted pie, the citrussy character of the aroma intensifies. In the palate this is so unexpected - so sweet - so juicy - so deliciously tasty and nice. Honey and lemon with floral overtones and spice, it's beautifully balanced and ripe. The apple and herb detected on the nose come through to linger on the lasting finish that is complex and reasonably full. Can be served exceptionally well chilled. 11% alc. 48 g/l rs. $22. 11May2009.

Blackenbrook Nelson Riesling 2008 (sc) A big, fat, oily, full-bodied style of Riesling - classic lime with a toasty richness, a scraping of honey and a powerful finish. This Riesling makes a good impression and the flavours last and last. Made in an 'Alsace' style. 13% alc. $20.50. 16Feb2010.

Boreham Wood Single Vineyard Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Quite shy on the nose - hints of lemon and apple perhaps. Quite sweet in the palate and much brighter and tastier than the nose would suggest. There's a spiced baked apple lemon boiled lolly overtone and though it's sweet and honeyed the well-balanced racy acidity and pithy characters make it seem quite dry. Chilling makes this wine seem even more luscious and juicy with honeysuckle and a spun sugar sweetness to the finish. 10% alc. >30 g/l rs. $26. 11May2009.

Camshorn Glasnevin Gravels Classic Riesling 2008 (sc) Rich, powerful floral scent of honeysuckle and citrus blossom. A lighter bodied style in the palate with a juicy tangelo sweetness. Fresh, light, juicy and tasty - a real party pleaser. 11% alc. $27.95. 4Nov2008.

Domain Road Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Straw gold. A little earthy and dull smelling with hints of putty on the nose - I'm not enamoured by the aroma but the palate redeems it. Green apple, lime, zesty spices and honey with off dry sweetness, biting acidity and very good length - for riesling, it is medium to full in style. This is one of those moderate sugar (15 grams per litre) and incredible high acidity (9.5g/l). It's a definite seafood style 12.5% alc. 15.3 g/l rs. $20. 11May2009.

Dry River Craighall Riesling 2008 - Martinborough (C) Moderate yellow gold. there's a creaminess to the attractive, lightly honeyed, floral scent. Very dry, a little spicy, lots of upfront citrus then melon jam, talc, mandarin, juniper berry - like it more and more as the flavours build in the palate. Pollen notes coming through - lots of floral and pollen, with a buttery/ slightly oily and slightly kero finish that comes with age. Long, rich finish - lovely mouth coating complexity. Very very long and creamy. 12.5% alc. $42.00. 26Jan2010.

Dry River Late Harvest Riesling 2008 (c) Light yellow gold. Passionfruit, cherimoya, mango and Kaffir lime on the nose. Rich and concentrated in the palate, there’s a rose scented hand cream oiliness and lots of lemon and lime peel adding a racy acid backbone that is fantastically balanced to the luscious sweet fruit with a silky texture and a long, long finish. It's a comfort wine that is reminiscent of freshly squeezed homemade orange and grapefruit juice with the addition of honey. 10% alc. $56.99. 3Jun2009.

Forrest Estate Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Aromatic, concentrated and weighty with initially tropical fruit and citrus zest, then it is like a lemon and honey drink with a gentle touch of sweetness. It really suits chilling and finishes quite light. A thirst quencher and very easy to drink. 14 grams of residual sugar. 11% alc. $15.99. 18Nov2009.

Forrest The Doctors’ Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale in colour with a very attractive floral, citrussy perfume, this wine blossoms with apple, lime and zesty spices, it has a delicacy to its attack then builds in flavour to an impressively long finish. A sweeter style with the sweetness perfectly balanced by lively acidity. Just gorgeous if you like the low alcohol, sweeter style. 8.5% alc. $18.99. 11Mar2009.
Light lemon gold. Delightfully aromatic with honeysuckle and citrus to the fore. A weighty style of Riesling, crammed with juicy lemons and limes to balance the luscious sweetness with honeysuckle pulsating through the zesty finish. Chilling accentuates the juiciness in the best possible way. And best if all it's low in alcohol. 8.5% alc. $19.99. 28Oct2009.

Foxes Island Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Watery pale with just a lemon tint. Delicately perfumed, floral, hints of honeysuckle rose petal and earthy herb scents (check out the sage). The delicacy of the aroma carries thru to palate in this lighter bodied style but then surprises with its mouthfilling flavour and oomph. I like the way the flavour expands in the palate. While a little earthy to start it quickly becomes bright and fresh with a sherbet-like zing. Clean, fresh and fruity, nicely balanced, with just enough sweetness to take the edge off the dryness. Finish is long and lasting. Looks very good, and while young, shows excellent potential. Five minutes later I can still taste it. Gold. 13% alc. 5.8 g/l rs. 7.8 g/l TA. $33.95. 26Jan2010.

Greystone Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Light yellow gold on colour, this aromatic, moderately sweet, lightly oily, almost creamy Riesling brims with tropical fruit, citrus blossom and honeysuckle aromas while the juicy honeyed sweetness is balanced perfectly by apple acidity and a fine seam of orange zest. 12.5% alc. $22.99. 7Oct2009.

Hawkshead Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Perfumed with hints of pear fruit and smelling a little like Pinot Gris on the nose at this youthful stage of its life but bracingly Riesling in the palate, dry, fresh, with green apple fruit, a pithiness and a long piercing finish. Yet still has estery pear-like overtones. Has some mid palate fatness and should flesh out well. Great potential. One to watch. Gibbston Valley fruit. 12.5% alc. 5Sep2008.

Hunters Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale lemon coloured. Refreshing scent of zest of lime in a late winter garden just as the blossoms on the citrus trees come into bloom - but such a contrast in the palate - this is winter through and through - golden lemons on the tree contrasting against the leaves of dark glossy green. The lemons are squeezed - so tart and fresh - with a touch of multiflora honey to add sweetness and an ever-so-slight spritz that tickles the tongue. As the wine is swallowed the flavours of boiled lemon lollies linger and the lasting impression is dry. A wine for the winter when you are stuffed up with cold - reminiscent of those lemon honey drinks and lozenges that sooth the throat and clear the head. 12% alc. 6.6 g/l rs. $18.00. 21Jul2009.

Julicher Estate Martinborough Riesling 2008 (sc) With an earthy, petrichor aroma it smells like it is going to taste searingly dry but the flavours of lemon, lime, ginger and tarragon are rounded and balanced and the whole experience is beautifully harmonious. It's stunning right now. 11.9g/L rs. 13% alc. 11.9 g/l rs. 13% alc. $19.95. 15May2011.

Kurow Village Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Citrine gold with a gem-like glow, this rich mouthfilling Riesling has an attractive perfume of honeysuckle and candied peel while grapefruit is to the fore in the slightly spritzy palate. Concentrated with complexities from bottle age and just the right amount of sweetness to keep the refreshing acidity in check. It states 'wild ferment' and is rather impressive. 11.5% alc. $18.99. 30Nov2011.

Lamont Central Otago Classic Riesling 2008 (sc) With an impression of sweetness on the first taste, this moderate alcohol, light gold coloured Riesling has vibrant fresh flavours of juicy citrus, apple, honey suckle, lime, bubblegum, zesty spices and warmth to the finish. High acidity imparts an impression on dryness as the wine progresses through the palate and balances that initial sweetness. 12.5% alc. $20.99. 11Mar2009.
Light straw coloured. Aromas of honeysuckle and lime and tantalising citrus flavours with crisp juicy apple, a steely undercurrent and a dry salivating finish. The vineyard is in Bendigo on the southern side of Lake Dunstan. 12.5% alc. $23.99. 12May2010.

Lawson's Dry Hills Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) There's a touch of gold to the hue and an abundance of lime and kero on nose - the scent whisks you immediately to South Australia but the bright, zesty, juicy tropical fruit flavours immediately bring you back across the Tasman to Marlborough. A weighty, moderately dry Riesling with power and richness, and a touch of lime on the finish. 12.5% alc. $18.99. 30Mar2011.

Main Divide Waipara Valley Riesling 2008 (sc) These guys really know how to make Riesling that is universally pleasurable. A sweeter style with very ripe fruit, reminiscent a little of fresh lychee in a jus of freshly squeezed tangelo with a sprinkle of tarragon and that characteristic touch of tingly spritz. But the apple-like acidity keeps this wine true to variety and there's enough viscosity to add the body and vinous complexity. It's what Ivan Donaldson, founder of Pegasus Bay, calls a beverage wine - and I can tell you, it's great for pre-dinner drinks. 12% alc. $19.95. 21Jul2009.

Montana Reserve Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) An attractive floral aroma and a vibrantly racy palate full of freshly squeezed juicy orange - it is so juicy, zesty, spritzy and fresh with a dry finish and over several days evolves beautifully in the bottle with tropical fruit and lime flavours coming into play. The Riesling Buy of the Year if you can get it for $12.99 on 'special' rather than the 'was' price of $21.99. 11.5% alc. 28Oct2008.

Mount Edward 'The Drumlin' Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Straw gold. Delicate honeysuckle and citrus aroma and flavours of apples every which way - juicy apple, tart apple, baked apple, spicy stewed apple and apples in a cool room. Alcohol seems hardly discernible and there's just a hint of mandarin. Citrus pith adds earthiness to the clean crisp finish and the racy acidity balances the 46 grams per litre of residual sugar. Quite incredible. 12.5% alc. $24.99. 6May2009.

Mt Beautiful Cheviot Hills Riesling 2008 (sc) From Cheviot, a little way south of Marlborough, this is initially quite apple-like in its flavour. But there's a buttery character too that quells the acidity and lets honeysuckle, lime and ginger marmalade flavours push though and with its fruity finish and off dry nature, it is quite easy to drink without food. 11.5g/l rs. 11.5% alc. $23.95.
Light gold. Citrus, honeysuckle and just a hint of kero on the nose. A moderately full-bodied dry Riesling with racy acidity surging through with just a touch of sweetness to keep it on an even keel and a finish that’s spiked with spicy tangelo zest that leaves a fresh tingly aftertaste. Crisp and tasty. 11.5% alc. $22.99. 19May2010.

Mt Difficulty Dry Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale straw. Delicate floral perfume. Lots of bracing acidity with fruit in the lime, lemonade, mandarin and apple spectrum with just a hint of honeysuckle and a shimmery, fine gravelly texture. Very dry and quite austere at this baby stage of its life. A wine to evolve in the bottle. 5 g/L rs. 12.5% alc. $25.99. 7Jan2009.

Mt Difficulty Long Gully Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Light straw yellow. A little spritzy on entry, this late harvest single vineyard wine is sweet and lightly viscous with a nectar-like texture. Full of sweet orange, apricot, lime zest, honey and spiced apple, it has a touch of ginger marmalade and plenty of refreshing acidity to balance the sweetness. With just 70 cases made, it's a bit and a treat to try, especially when served lightly chilled as an aperitif. 80 g/L rs. 10.5% alc. $38.99. 7Jan2009.

Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale straw. Honeysuckle and sweet orange aroma. A gently sweet wine with fresh, fruity, tasty flavours and exactly the right amount of residual sugar to balance the tangy citrus acidity. It has a lovely lightness to its attack with lively zest and spiced green apple on the lingering finish. Lots of all round appeal and will take plenty of chilling too. 20 g/L rs. 11.5% alc. $18.99. 7Jan2009.

Mt Difficulty Target Gully Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Light yellow gold. Concentrated lemon, lime and honeysuckle aromas with a pithy, earthy inflection and a subtle toffee note to the sweet Riesling flavours with incredibly delicious, tangy, zesty, mouthwatering acidity to balance that sweetness. There's a modicum of spritziness, it has a rich mid palate and builds to a full long finish. 11% alc. $22.99. 11Mar2009.

Mud House Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) A medium style in the sweetness stakes, this pretty, floral wine has a spicy infusion to the zesty lime, lemon and apple fruit flavours and a deft touch of honeysuckle on the lingering finish. Chilling accentuates the upfront racy acidity but the sweetness lingers on the finish. A perfect wine for summer because it can be well chilled and is still delicious. 11.5% alc. $19.99. 1Oct2008.
Light yellow gold with an expressive lemon/lime aroma that leads into an off dry palate with a light spritzig feel to the texture and moderate sweetness balancing the tangy acidity. Apple joins lemon and lime on the finish that becomes more honeysuckle floral and spicy with a hint of apricot as it lingers. A light to medium-bodied style with a tug of war between the sweetness and acidity, but the sweetness just wins on the day. Fabulous length too. 11.5% alc. $22.99. 22Apr2009.

Muddy Water Dry Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) A rich, weighty style with a toasty character to the bouquet lemon and grapefruit peel flavours with some floral notes coming through on the finish. It seems a little austere to start, but it definitely loses that hard edge and simply seduces the palate on the rather long finish. 12.5% alc. $29. 12Nov2009.

Muddy Water Growers Series James Hardwick Riesling 2008 (sc) - Pale coloured, estery and acid-driven - so light, so young, so tight with an earthy, citrus pith scent and bracing acidity. But after time in the bottle - the luxury of assessing these wines over several nights - you can taste the transformation from pre-pubescent teenager to curvaceous prom queen. Initially rated 17.5/20, the rating was deservingly re-assessed at 18.5 as the wine evolved in the bottle and threw away its juvenile austerity. 13% alc. 16 g/l rs. 6.2 g/l TA. 4Nov2008.

Muddy Water Growers Series Lough Vineyard Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Transparent light lemon yellow, fragrantly perfumed with lemon, spring garden florals, citrus blossoms, pollen and honey. Flavours are powerful and seem dry to off dry with great palate weight, a touch of sweetness and a juicy, fresh lime sherbet zing. It's bright, exciting, racy and long with just enough viscosity for textural complexity and load and loads of dazzling lime and tangelo adding to its mouth-watering appeal. Uncomplicated Riesling that can take hours of chilling. Pour it. Enjoy it. 12% alc. $25. 19/20. 4Nov2008.
Yum! This is gorgeous and is quite sweet but impeccable acid sugar balance too. Beautiful drinking right now with a seamless texture and flavours of juicy mandarin, tangelo and honeysuckle and can be well chilled. 13% alc. $15.99. 4Aug2010.

Muddy Water Growers Series Unplugged Riesling 2008 (sc) Golden in colour with honey aromas and absolutely packed with honey and botrytis flavours and tasting almost like nectar with a hint of toffee to the finish. Quite an intense wine and deliciously sweet, not a quaffer, it needs something to accompany it to cut through the sweetness. It's like many wines that come only in 375ml bottles because they are so concentrated. 73 g/l rs. 12.5% alc. $25. 12Nov2009.
With around 73 grams of residial sugar and low acidity it seem quite sweet with botrytis and honey also key factors to the luscious flavours. Botrytis is also being responsible for the yellow gold hue. Showing fabulous development with bottle age, orange peel, hints of grapefruit, white pepper and ginger add to this wine's appeal. At the perfect temperature when well chilled. 70 g/l rs. 12.5% alc. $30.99. 16Feb2011.

Murdoch James Martinborough Blue Rock Riesling 2008 (sc) Light lemon gold. Sweet lemon / honeysuckle scent. Smells medium dry to dry in a classic Riesling style. That is also the impression in the palate. Pithy, earthy and citrussy, light to medium bodied and dry. A classic, initially seems a little short, but that is no problem with time. Tastes terrific both at autumn room temperature and with refrigerator chilling - the latter makes it seem almost bone dry. 11.5% alc. $28. 11May2009.

Palliser Estate Martinborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Floral aromas are infused with lime and hints of tropical fruit. It's fresh with racy acidity and a warm texture that contributes to the palate weight. Off dry in style, and persistent, with mandarin and honeysuckle lingering. 12.5% alc. $18. 23Feb2010.

Pegasus Bay Bel Canto Dry Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Bright yellow gold. Inviting citrus and honeysuckle aromas - lime and melon jam. Vibrant, punchy and spicy to the taste. Looks like it has some age, but taste young and fresh with a focussed backbone of Riesling acidity, a honeyed earthiness and a lovely stonefruit richness. It has power, the length and balance with a hint of botrytis and interesting savouriness - almost mealy. Mouthfilling, long, with a toasty with an orange marmalade finish and a great tug of underlying acidity to balance the richness. Fermented in oak with wild yeasts.19/20. 14% alc. $31.95. 26Jan2010.

Pegasus Bay Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) A medium gold colour with, sherbet-like aromas with a talcy nuance and a hint of honeysuckle. Off dry to the taste, it's a zesty wine with a mandarin-like sweetness to the tropical fruit flavours with a lightly honeyed texture as well as a slight honeyed flavours. Acidity seems soft and balances the gentle sweetness with hints of grapefruit on the finish. Tasted blind it proved once again why Pegasus Bay makes one of my favourite Rieslings. An absolute perfect beverage wine. That is I enjoyed drinking it more on its own than with food - it is perfect for afternoon entertaining and pre-dinner drinks. 13% alc. $27.95. 12Nov2009.

Peregrine Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) A bright fresh tangy wine with an immediate sensation of lime sherbet and racy lemon and green apple acidity – like biting into a slightly underripe Granny Smith apple – the acidity almost makes you scream. Honey notes come through on the floral finish yet it still gives the impression of being quite dry. Tip: do not over-chill this wine. 13.5% alc. $22.99. 1Dec2010.

Richardson Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Very pale with just a hint of lime to the hue. Perfumed and floral with delicate citrus blossom and honey suckle. Fresh and fruity to the taste with some sweetness and gentle spritz cut by a crisp limey Riesling purity with a ripply, gravelly, undercurrent. Intense for such a young wine. Technically dry with a light fresh touch and a zesty, spicy brightness. 6 g/l rs. 7 g/l TA. 11% alc. $22.99. 22Oct2008.

Rippon Jeunesse Young Vines Wanaka Riesling 2008 (D) The other has a little more gold to the colour, redolent of freshly squeezed lemonade fruit on the nose (there is a fruit called lemonade) and floral too - white primula with it subtle but heady scent and later honeysuckle - there's almost a hint of butterscotch too. Butterscotch???? Yes, something creamy and buttery and altogether intriguing. A fatter, weightier Riesling with a smooth slippery texture and concentration and power - orange zest emerges from the back of the palate and pushes it way to the front, cutting that oiliness. Spiced apple abounds on the finish and that citrussy impression lingers for ages - it wavers through lemon, tangelo and grapefruit. $24.50 12.5% alc. 1Sep2009.

Rippon Wanaka Riesling 2008 (D) Sweet and full of racy acidity - there's a hint of green apple and a squeeze of lime - quite dry on entry but then it fills out fleshy sub tropical fruit - heading towards feijoa- yes, feijoa most definitely - feijoa with a pearlescent texture, hints of pineapple and that zingy bracing tartness. Fresh, vibrant, delicious and length of flavour too. Drink it fast and it tastes a little earthy with a tingle of spritz. Savour it slowly, let it cover every nook and cranny in the mouth, and enjoy every moment. $32.50 12% alc. 1Sep2009.

Riverby Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Straw gold. Smells dry and lemon citrussy. Seems a little dilute on entry to palate, but that's only momentarily as full on kero, lemon, lime and zesty spices come through in juicy abundance but then they seem to fade away quite quickly. Quite austere, coating the teeth with its astringency and there is a flinty / struck match character and a hint of salinity to the toasty finish. A touch of honey sweetness comes through as it lingers and baked green apples is the lingering aftertaste. 13% alc. 3 g/l rs. $20.00. 26Jan2010.

Riverby Sali's Block Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) This bright, fresh wine is off dry to medium sweetness and full of juicy, citrus, pineapple and red apple fruit with a touch of tropical guava, an earthy rippling undercurrent and dazzling acidity that gives a perception of dryness to the lingering finish. There's a hint of botrytis and it's drinking beautifully now. 12% alc. 15g/lrs. $19.50. 17Sep2008.

Rockburn Parkburn Central Otago Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale lemon gold. A little grapey on the nose. Spicy and zesty to the taste, a little austere to start, some apple character, some toastiness, seems a little burnt and though it is rich, it is also dry with a dull earthy character, lip drying astringency and a bitter lemon finish. Fails to excite as much as some of the others. Seemed out of balance when first opened and would be hard to drink a big glass of but like others, it improved in the bottle. 11.6% alc. $22.00. 26Jan2010.

Saint Clair Block 9 Big John Riesling 2008 (sc) A touch of musky floral perfume joins lime sherbet and tropical fruit scents. In the mouth the texture is lightly viscous with flavours of lemon, lime and honeysuckle nectar - the texture is sublime and the perfect balance of sweet and sour almost sends quivers down the spine. Served chilled, this lower alcohol 'Spatlese' style is absolutely delicious Riesling. 10% alc. $21. 13Feb2010.

Sherwood Estate Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Straw gold with an inviting toasty aroma layered with lime, talc and honeysuckle, this tastes moderately dry with vibrantly fresh acidity that shimmers with steeliness yet it's perfectly balanced with honey and the lingering taste in the mouth is simply salivating. Drinking beautifully now, it's a perfect summer party wine. 11.5% alc. $9.99. 16Nov2011.

Spinyback Nelson Riesling 2008 (sc) Light lemon gold. Perfumed, floral, sweetness leads into a juicy sweet palate. A little smoky, a little earthy, a little savoury, become very lime honeyed with a finish that is drier than the aroma and entry to palate would have you believe. Some botrytis (raisin) influence. Good solid Riesling with a concentrated richness and a touch of sweetness. Very good length. 17.5 arrow up. 13% alc. 13.7 g/l rs. $13.90. 19Apr2009.

Spy Valley Envoy Marlborough Dry Riesling 2008 (sc) Medium gold coloured. Even though labelled 'dry', this seems to have some degree of sweetness to the deliciously juicy fruit. It has a nice seam of acidity driving through the wine and a zesty disposition. It's lightly honeyed with a stonefruit sweetness to counteract the sweet acidity and some toasty botrytis lingers on finish. Delicious as a beverage wine. Good with lightly spicy food. 17/20. 12.5% alc. 7.2g/l rs. 6.8 g/l TA. $28.90. 26Jan2010.

Spy Valley Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Wow, there's a ton of flavour in this exciting, full-flavoured Riesling. It's filled with tropical fruit, honey, mandarin, orange and apricot and though it has a seemingly dry character, there is enough sweetness coming through to make the finish seem off dry. Beautifully balanced, fruity and easy to enjoy. 12% alc. $20.99. 5Nov2008.
A perfectly balanced off dry to medium style. Zesty and juicy and full of freshly squeezed grapefruit, mandarin and lime with a touch of honey and loads of flavoursome mango-flushed tropical fruit. One of the best of the season, it has a bright, long lasting, tangy finish. 18.5/20. 12% alc. $19.90. 23Dec2008.

Stoneleigh Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) A pretty scent of juicy citrus and tropical fruit with a honeysuckle aura, served chilled, the flavours are juicy and thirst quenching and reminiscent of freshly squeezed orange and lime with a gentle touch of honey and flower nectar. Seemingly dry, despite the 'medium' sugar level (10.5grams per litre) and perfectly balanced, it's quite racy with lovely fruit richness and just a touch of sweetness on the lingering aftertaste. 12% alc. 20Dec2008.

The Crater Rim 'Dr Köhls' Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) All lemon meringue, apple and tropical fruit drizzled with honey and underpinned with the flavours of a lime and ginger marmalade. It's sweet but underlying racy acidity checks the sweetness in its tracks and adds a delicious mouthwatering tang. Botrytis gives the wine a toasty nuance - lime marmalade on toast - breakfast wine. There's a trickle of sprtiziness to the texture and I imagine if lightly carbonated, this would be even easier to drink than it already is. 92 g/l rs. 8.5% alc. $28. 17Jan2010.

The Crater Rim Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Pale straw gold in colour with grapefruit and honeysuckle the key aroma and flavour profiles, it is brown sugar sweet but has plenty of juicy acidity to balance that luscious sweetness and becomes quite steely/austere/flinty on the finish. Chilling makes it rather mouthwateringly scrumptious. 9.5% alc. $18.99. 11Mar2009.

Thornbury Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Light gold coloured, a little 'petrolly' on the nose with a salty savouriness coming through and crisp and dry to the taste with richness and palate weight balancing the juicy citrus acidity. With 8 grams per litre residual sugar it could be considered just off-dry, though it actually seems dry. A powerful wine with a little age and rounded edges, it takes chilling well and is drinking beautifully right now. A bargain buy. 12% alc. $12.99. 1Dec2010.
Seemingly quite dry, but this could be deceptive, it's very fruity with green grape and honeyed citrus flavours and just enough botrytis to add interest with overpowering the wine with sweetness. Starting to show some bottle-developed characters with a hint of kero creeping in, it has a lip-smacking sweet/sour balance. Value packed drinking right now. 12% alc. $12.99. 16Feb2011.

Urlar Gladstone Riesling 2008 (sc) Light lemon gold colour. This is packed with fresh apple acidity to the point of being astringent when first opened, counteracted somewhat with creamy food, so I put the top back on the bottle and taste again the next day. Now we're talking, baby. There's a hint of tropical and lime coming through on the scent and a slight oily texture with lemony cutting through the fat and floral / honeysuckle nuances on the finish. Quite dry but with enough fruit intensity to be on the cusp of off dry. But with that searing lime curd acidity, it's a wine that will develop well, I'd say. Vines managed through traditional organic and biodynamic principles. Try it with a fillet of terakihi with a beurre blanc sauce. 13% alc. 8.1 g/l rs. $22. 3Nov2009.

Valli Old Vine Riesling 2008 (sc) Smells so dry - dry, earthy and full of the scent of lemon pith - the inside of the peel not the outside. Some sweetness to the flavour - probably quite high residual sugar to balance the high (7.24g/l) acidity - and even though the label says the wine is dry it's all about perception. Some herbal nuances - lemon grass / lemon balm / lemon thyme - and an oiliness to the texture that overlies the slightly grainy backbone - if that makes sense. A rich, weighty style of Riesling that seems to be more powerful with every sip. Made from some of Central Otago's oldest Riesling vines that grown in the legendary Black Ridge Vineyard (planted 1980) in Alexandra. 13% alc. $28. 21Jul2009.

Villa Maria Private Bin Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Light gold coloured with citrus and honeysuckle aromas, it seems a little sweet on the first taste but there's plenty of acidity to balance the sweetness and the finish seems dry and tangy. Filled with citrus, honeysuckle, flint and zesty spice, the acidity indicates the wine has the capacity to age - but for me, right now, it seems a bit awkward - however at the right time and place it would be immensely drinkable. 9g/l rs. 7g/l TA. 12% alc. $17.99. 20May2009.

Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Riesling 2008 (sc) Light straw gold with aromas of lime and warmed honey and loads of purity and nerve to the gorgeous tangy flavour. Lemon and honeysuckle abound and though it seems quite dry with its nervy acidity it has a juicy tropical fruit richness and a very long finish. 10.5% alc. $19.99. 22Sep2010.

Villa Maria Single Vineyard Fletcher Riesling 2008 (sc) This off dry, lower alcohol style seems quite delicate but it builds concentration and power. Delightfully fresh with tropical fruit, sweet citrus and even a hint of feijoa, a hint of honey and lovely, balancing, citrus zest tang. Chilling introduces a little more sharpness. 9.5% alc. $23.99. 16Sep2009.
Citrus, honeysuckle and a whiff of kero on the nose carry through to become flavour layers in the palate. Crisp, fresh, juicy, loads of tangy citrus and heritage apples with a hint of ginger-like spice and a long zesty finish. Off dry in style. 9.5% alc. $22.99. 2Jun2010.

Waimea Estate 'Classic' Nelson Riesling 2008 (sc) A fragrant bouquet of honeysuckle and lime follows through to the palate where racy acidity balances the natural grapey sweetness with honey and toast coming through. Lovely weight and concentration. Has become complex with that little bit of age and is drinking beautifully now. 13% alc. $12.99 20Apr2011.
Light yellow with a bouquet of honeysuckle and lime scent, this is developing some lovely characters even with a short time of bottle age – a nuance of kero comes through. There's richness to the mid-palate, well-balanced honey-edged sweetness and underlying orange marmalade. It's a Riesling you can almost eat. 13% alc. $12.99. 15Jun2011.

Waipara Hills Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) The pale lemon coloured wine is a deliciously fresh juicy, light-bodied, thirst quenching style. When chilled it has delicate floral scents and tastes off-dry with flavours of tangelo, lime, fresh fruit salad and pear undercut by crisp acidity that adds a decisive and piquant tang.11.5% alc. $15.99. 3Feb2010.

Waipara Hills Soul of the South Waipara Riesling 2008 (sc) Nicely chilled, this fresh, juicy, just 'off-dry' Riesling imparts flavours of freshly squeezed lemon and mandarin with a tropical fruit infusion and a suggestion of honeysuckle. An excellent aperitif style. 11.5% alc. $15.99. 14Apr2010.

Woollaston Nelson Riesling 2008 (sc) Light lemon gold. Perfumed, floral, honeysuckle, dandelion, lime zest - intriguing attractive aroma. There's a honeyish overlay to the citrus and stonefruit flavours - a hint of beeswax perhaps - and lime ginger marmalade. Slightly viscous in texture. Light to medium-bodied with a hint of spice and lots of juicy (estery) appeal. Excellent length too. Almost can detect a hint of kaffir lime leaf and coconut in the background. Lots of yums. 18/20. 13.5% alc. 7g/l rs. $19. 19Apr2009.

2007 Vintage [top] [index]

Anchorage Classic Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Light white yellow gold. A concentrated, honeyish, slightly toasty aroma with a hint of lemon peel. Some earthy notes too. Medium to full-bodied palate, quite sweet and honeyed with a lightly viscous texture, perhaps a touch of botrytis. Spicy and zesty up front with a dancing texture, it has quite a 'sour' mid palate but this is balanced by the honeysuckle and citrus blossom characters to leave a sweetness to the finish. Fascinating. But something in here I don't like. Perhaps S reduction - or perhaps that little bit earthy/cheesy (leesy). Has concentration, however. Riwaka fruit. 17/20. 12% alc. 18 g/l rs. 19Apr2009.

Bald Hills Last Light Central Otago Riesling 2007 (sc) This is the style of Riesling that whisks you to as tropical island because on first opening it is full of fragrant, frangipani and coconut ice scents and fruity juicy flavours with a squeeze of lime, a hint of coconut, well balanced sweetness and a zesty finish. All the while there’s a racy undercurrent with earthy nuances reminiscent of potter's clay. The next day the aroma is more focussed on lime and while some of the upfront tropical notes have gone, there is no failing of Riesling purity. 13.5% alc. $25. 23May2008.

Blackenbrook Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) A rich, dryish style with weight and concentration, it is well balanced with sweet citrus and pineapple balanced by zesty acidity. A fresh, refreshing with underlying 'oomph', it's slightly grainy in texture with a long, clean aftertaste. 13.5% alc. 8g/l rs. $22.90. 10Jan2008.

Brightside Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Deep lemon gold with a delicate lime glint, this appears to have a little age with a mellow character to the spice and toasted citrus scents, some earthy notes too. Grapefruit fills the palate with some earthy traits and a graininess to the texture. Concentrated stonefruit joins the citrus and the finish is full and long, becoming quite toasty and smoky as it lingers. A rather satisfying wine because of its age the acidity has mellowed, it's not too dry, nor too sweet, and you don't lose sight of the variety. Made by Kaimira Estate. 16.5/20. 12% alc. $16. 19Apr2009.

Camshorn Classic Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Fresh, juicy and lightly sherbetty with a delicate hint of muskiness, this sweeter style of Riesling is sure to appeal to fans of the Melness style. There's tropical guava, passionfruit and hints of rose petal on the nose and a deliciously fruity, slightly viscous palate that is perfectly balanced by the underlying zesty acidity. Incredibly appealing with its abundant fruitiness, and it can be served well chilled. 11.5% alc. $23.99. 21Nov2007.

Carrick Josephine Central Otago Riesling 2007 (sc) Straw gold with a lime glint. Gentle floral, honeysuckle and lemon aromas. A lovely sweetish Germanic type Riesling with a lightly viscous honeyed texture and beautifully clean apple and lime fruit that provides the supporting acidity. 8% alc. 47 g/l RS. $27.99.4Feb2009.
Straw gold. Floral and delicately citrussy on the nose with juicy apple and mandarin flavours, a flinty mid palate and some toffee notes emerging on the light but very lingering finish. A tight, taut, acid-driven style with hardly enough alcohol to notice. Just beautiful. 8% alc. $27.99. 17Jun2009.

Catalina Sounds Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Made in one of those rare Marlborough dry styles and with three years of age it is rich and piercing, dry and steely with great line and length and hints of kero coming through. Takes some chilling and really appealing for livers of this style. 10Mar2010.

Dry River Craighall Vineyard Amaranth Riesling 2007 Overtly fruity on the nose with sweet citrus, juicy apples, flowers and sherbet - an aroma so enthralling, it scored a perfect 7 out of 7 for the 'nose'. The essence of Riesling in the palate - crisp, fresh, spicy and zesty with hints of a ginger-like spritziness and while it seems quite dry there's the perfect amount of residual sugar to balance the taut acidity that expresses itself like apples, grapefruit and limes. There's a touch of honey on the finish and earthy, river stone nuances too that leave the palate dry. Quite tight but deliciously tangy on the first day, it becomes evere so much richer the next day. 12.5% alc. $40.00 19Aug2007.

Forest Estate Doctors' Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Pale. Potter's clay on nose and slightly lemony and pithy but overall very shy in releasing its scent. Beautiful balance of sweet apple and citrus-like fruit and crisp fresh acidity but it really is the sweetness that carries this wine. The stoney / slatey theme continues with a slight graininess to the texture and the aftertaste is juicy and long. A refreshing, lip-smacking wine. 8.5% alc. 30g/L rs. 9 g/L acidity. $18-$20. 1Sep2008.
It's the palest of lemon hues with a crystal clear lustre, the fragrance is citrus and blossomy and the taste is just so refreshing. Juicy lime and mandarin-like acidity balances the honeysuckle sweetness with a hint of apricot nectar and a lingering, zesty, thirst-quenching tang. 8.5% alc. 30g/L rs. $23. 23Jan2009.

Forrest Wairau Valley Dry Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Dry, crisp, limey scents -very fresh in the context of Forrest's dry styles, which I usually taste with a little age. Talcy, almost slatey, crisp and pure, green apple fruit with a subtle tropical and almost saline tang. It fleshes out beautifully in the mouth with exotic earthy fruits and a fruit sweetness that lingers with an underlying shimmery verve. 12.2% alc. 4 g/L rs. 6.7 g/L acidity. $22-$25. 1Sep2008.

Forrest Estate Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Light straw gold coloured. Lemon and lime on the nose together with a hint of flower and ripe apple. A lovely medium-styled Riesling with lightly tropical fruit and again that steely, slatey undercurrent but with sweetness add more volume and immediate approachability to the palate. Beautifully balanced with good length, it is drinking well already. 13% alc. 14g/L rs. 7.1 g/L acidity. $16-$20. 1Sep2008.

Forrest The Valleys Brancott Riesling 2007 – Marlborough (sc) Glossy lime-tinged gold. Heady aromatics of honeysuckle and lime and subtle nuances of toast and beeswax come to mind. Deliciously juicy and thirst quenching with many layers of delicious Riesling flavours – there are bottle-aged characters of hokey pokey, lime curd on toast and talc with beautifully balanced citrus and tarragon notes, tropical fruit, freshly squeezed tangelo and an exciting fresh racy brightness. An outstanding eight-year-old that Riesling aficionados will find hard to resist. 12% alc. $18.99. 7Oct2015.

Framingham Classic Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) There's an appealing fruity aroma to this extremely fruit wine, which really suits being chilled because it makes it taste so juicy and quenching and introduces a nuance of lime into the sweeter citrussy flavours. Without chilling it's more fruju citrus sweet - it needs the chilling to enhance the impression of acidity and then it's quite delicious. 11.5% alc. $22.95. 12Nov2009.

Greystone Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Seemingly soft at first, it's a little slow to start but quickly transforms to fill the palate with its vibrant, juicy, lime and tangelo zestiness. Medium sweet with moderate alcohol and racy acidity, this mouthwatering wine has a long, long finish. Gorgeous. 12% alc. 11.5g/l rs. $24. 19Oct2007.

Hunter's Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Perfumed with tropical fruit and sherbet and sweet citrussy zest, the aromas are fresh and bright. The tangy zest carries through to the bright and lightly spritzy palate. Light, zesty, fresh and clean with moderate vinous concentration and loads of fizzy fruit sherbet, there's the merest hint on honey with a subtle yet persistent finish. The back label says 'dry' yet to me it is 'off dry'. 8.4g/l rs. 12.5% alc. $19.50. 8Feb2008.

John Forrest Collection Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) The golden hue of this ravishingly scented Riesling gives an indication it may have a little age, as do the toasty notes infusing the honeyed citrus and tropical fruit bouquet. Beautifully toasty, just off dry, with touches of honey, flower nectar, tropical nuances and glorious lime and marmalade-like acidity that has had its edges polished by the bottle ageing. A stunning Riesling that at this moment is rounded and complete. Gold NZIWS. 13% alc. $24.99. 20Jan2016.

Kahurangi Estate Dry Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Aromatic and floral with lime, honeysuckle and a touch of flint to the scent, this searingly dry Riesling is steely and slatey with green apples, lemon and honey and lovely richness and weight from the toasty characters that have accrued with age. The finish lingers with a tantalising salty tang. 12.5% alc.. $18.99. 6Oct2010.

Kahurangi Mt Arthur Classic Riesling 2007 - Nelson (sc) Pale straw. Quite restrained aroma for Riesling. Sweetish flavours of honey and lime, it's deliciously juicy with a crisp dry finish, but the sweetness floods back to balance the drying acidity and the lasting mouthfeel is rounded and there's a hint of a salty tang. 10.5% alc. $22.99. 10Sep2008.

Main Divide Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Some reduction initially on the nose that quickly dissipate to reveal honeysuckle and citrus scents. The nose is complex and intriguing. Power in the palate, crisp, dry and weight with a creamed honey and nectar-like overlay, the hint of sweetness balanced by delicious mouthwatering acidity of freshly squeezed oranges and tangelos. Medium in style and Very appealing with excellent length. 11.5% alc. $19.95. 4 Nov2008.
Very fragrant and citrussy on the nose with honeysuckle and old-fashioned sweet yellow grapefruit or new-fashioned pink grapefruit if you like. Full of juicy sweet fruit with tropical guava, feijoa, mandarin and apricot flavours perfectly balanced by mouthwatering citrussy acidity, making it medium in style. 11.5% alc. $17.99. tasted from another bottle at another time and place. 5Nov2008.

Matua Valley Reserve Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Dry and pithy on the nose and earthy and lemony in the palate with tart apples the dominant fruit. A reasonably dry style with crisp acidity, quite austere at this stage of its life and just lacking fruit sweetness which means it shouldn’t be served chilled to the bones because it will be like drinking a granny smith apple. But it has the potential to blossom with a little age. And it opened up beautifully over 3-4 days in the opened bottle.12.5% alc. $21.95. 10Jan2008.

Milton Opou Riesling 2007 - Gisborne (sc) Bright pale lemon. Strongly aromatic and flinty with kero-infused citrus and honeysuckle aromas and bright zesty flavours with a spritzy /sherbet up-front attack, a weighty mid-palate and sweet mandarin and tangelo on the lingering finish. With such well balanced acidity to sugar, you don't really notice the sweetness. Bio-dynamically grown fruit. 9% alc. $26.99. 20Aug2008.

Mondillo Central Otago Riesling 2007 (sc) Pale lemon coloured. Abundant citrus and apple scents and crisp dry racy flavours. The ripe lime and juicy apple flavours together with honeysuckle impart just enough sweetness to balance the fresh acidity. The grainy, ripply texture invokes the purity of a mountain stream tumbling over rocks while the fruit fleshes out to a more tropical spectrum on the much richer finish. 4g/l rs. 13.5% alc. $23.99. 5Nov2008.
Palest straw colour. Delicate scent hinting of honeysuckle. Profuse lemon, lime and apple flavours with a zesty spicy tang. Crisp and racy with a lightly oily texture, it is quite dry, "searingly dry" some would say, although there's enough sweetness there to balance the shimmery acidity and a rich mouthfeel to the finish. 13.5% alc. $23.99. 25Feb2009.
Light in colour with a pure lemon aroma and lemon pith and honeysuckle flavours. A very fine expression of a moderately dry Riesling that shows the purity that can be achieved from this classic grape, especially in the climate of Central Otago. Bendigo fruit. 13.5% alc. $23.99. 4Aug2010.

Mount Riley Marlborough/Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Abundantly aromatic with scents of grapes, lime, oil and hay, this high-toned Riesling seems quite dry with flavours of limes, a toasty character that has accrued with age and a long, juicy finish to balance the acidity beautifully. Can take lots of chilling. 12.5% alc. Screwcap. $9.99. 20Oct2010.

Muddy Water Dry Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Enticing crisp, dry Riesling scents hint of honeysuckle sweetness. Dry, but with only a modicum of acidity which makes it seem quite honeyed and thus provides an intriguing ying-yang. A little reserved to start but has a full-bodied, powerful concentrated finish. 13% alc. 6.2 g/l rs. 5.7 g/l TA. $29. 18/20. 4Nov2008.

Muddy Water James Harwick Riesling 2007 (sc) Deep concentrated and mellow, already hinting of bottle development with hints of kero and a honeyed toffee scent. Quite sweet and honeyed with a nectar-like feel to the texture and a yellow fruit brightness and while the acidity seems soft to start, it hums away in the background to building to a vibrant crescendo on the finish. A joy to drink. 13% alc. 16 g/l rs. 6.2 g/l TA. 18.5/20. $29. 4Nov2008.

Mt Arthur Reserve Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Light gold. Perfumed, with concentrated lime, a hint of tropical fruit and nuances of kero, it smells dry but it has fruit sweetness and palate richness. The tropical island, limey nuances explode on the finish and linger with a tingly spiciness. Great length too. 13% alc. $23.99. 4Mar2009.

Mystery Creek Gisborne Riesling 2007 (sc) Lovely rich light yellow gold. A little exotic on the nose, orange blossom, a hint of apricot, some other flower. Some botrytis apparent in the palate adds a honeyed richness and lusciousness with again that hard to put the finger on exotic character. Perhaps a little nutty too. It seems dry - well it finishes dry, but it has that richness and fruit sweetness and a touch of beeswax. This is more the stonefruit than citrus spectrum - crisp nectarines come to mind and citrus is in the orange family, perhaps a touch of Sumac adding that earthy citrus character. Rounded and beautifully balanced, this is a wine I really could drink (and probably will). A dry wine with botrytis influence. Long full finish goes on and on. Love the mouthfeel it leaves. High silver low gold, yes definitely gold. 11.5% alc. $?. 26Jan2010.

Neudorf Moutere Riesling 2007 - Nelson (sc) Pale straw gold. Amazingly captivating perfume - like crushed lemon verberna leaves, honeysuckle and exotic tropical fruit. Sweet to the taste, honeyed, earthy - Germanic in some respects - and an array of juicy citrus and tropical fruits that emerge and linger on the finish where the racy acidity adds a drying note to keep the sugar / acid balance perfect. Clean, light, bright and delicious with little glimpses of how it will improve with age - and improve it most definitely will. 39 g/l rs on back label. 8.7g/l TA. 10% alc. $35.99. 18Jun2008.

Palliser Estate Martinborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Light yellow gold. Lime and honey aromas and zesty lime and lemon flavours with a hint of tropical fruit. Weighty and full, initially seems dry but it has a gentle sweetness, a lightly oily texture, a vibrant finish and just a tickle of spritz. Outstanding value at the price. 12% alc. $13.99. 8Jul2009.

Pegasus Bay Aria Late Picked Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Light gold coloured with honeysuckle and citrus aromas together with a botrytis character that imparts an apricot character, this is so Pegasus Bay with abundant grapefruit and that hallmark spritz from some retained CO2 that imparts vitality and zest and keeps this medium sweet style just so clean and fresh. The nectar-like texture coats the mouth, ripe stonefruit adds depth to the flavour, zesty spices and clean acidity cut through the sweetness to perfectly balance the wine and the beautiful flavours last and last. 10% alc. $38.99. 11Mar2009.
Deep lime-hued gold, gem-like. Quince jelly and apricot conserve on the nose with a hint of lemon honey, this yummy sweet wine is a bright zesty, honey-infused late harvest style with flavours reminiscent of macerated white raisins, mandarins and tangelos. Perfect balance of sweetness to acidity, almost perfect in every way. 10% alc. $39.99. 16Dec2009.

Pegasus Bay Waipara Valley Dry Riesling 2007 (sc) Bright golden hued; grapefruit and spiced orange peel scents and the rich, toasty, concentrated and vibrant mouthfilling flavours full of Pegasus Bay's signature 'grapefruit'. There's a slight viscosity to the texture and a perceived sweetness - perhaps from botrytis. Perfectly balanced with an earthy richness teasing the fresh citrus acidity and after the wine has been swallowed, the flavours linger in the mouth for an amazingly long time. 14% alc. $26.95. 10Jan2008.
Quite spritzy and on the medium end of dry. Quite spritzy and on the medium end of dry. Rich in colour, this has developed quite interestingly in the last 10 months. - there's a hint of coconut amongst the concentrated lime with a honeyed sweetness from the touch of botrytis. Slightly viscous in texture with well balanced acidity humming away in the background.14% alc. $26.95. 25Dec2008.
Tantalising orange and lemon rind scents lead into concentrated full flavours that have a lovely touch of floral musk, a hint of apricot and the trademark Pegasus Bay grapefruit and spritzy zest. It says 'dry' on the label but there is about 7 grams of residual sugar balancing the powerful acidity and a touch of botrytis adds to the overall concentration and enhances the slightly luscious finish. 14% alc. $28.99. 21Jan2009.

Pegasus Bay Waipara Valley Riesling 2007 (sc) A fresh, vibrant, powerful style of medium sweetness level Riesling - lively and spritzy on the tongue and full of the signature 'grapefruit' that seems to characterise the Pegasus Bay (and second label Main Divide) rieslings, joined by lime and perfectly balanced residual sweetness. Lots of yummy sherbet all the way through the palate with a honeycomb nuance creeping in on the finish and a touch of viscosity to the texture. Outstanding Riesling - perhaps the best ever from Pegasus Bay. 11% alc. $26.95. 8Jan2008.
Light lemon gold - bright and showing a little spritz in the glass when poured. Sherbet on the nose and crisp, vibrant, citrus and honey/honeysuckle in the reasonably weighty palate with a spritzy, tingly mouthfeel and a medium sweetness level although with its high acidity it gives an initial impression of being quite dry. There is abundant fruit sweetness mid palate and the signature Pegasus Bay flourish of grapefruit lingers on the lasting finish. Tasted at First Glass. 18.5/20. 11% alc. $26.95. 6Aug2008.

Pyramid Valley Lebecca Vineyard Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Light gold in colour with an unusual smoky nuance to the scent, then marmalade, melon jam, flint and cheese. Fleshy tasting with peach underpinned by grapefruit, funky wild yeasts and a toasty richness that has accrued with age. A meal of a Riesling with a full-bodied finish and layers of honeycomb as it lingers. It's very different and perhaps a 'love it' or 'hate it' wine – but I think it is very very good. It has 34 grams per litre of residual sugar although it doesn't seem this sweet. 11% alc. $37.99. 4May2011.

Riverby Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) A dry style, a little earthy on the nose with an aroma reminiscent of modelling clay. Full of bright fruit flavours of apples, lemon, lime, sherbet and later tangelo with a tingly fresh liveliness to the texture. Has richness and power, with good fruit and well-balanced taut acidity. Shows some lovely Riesling 'purity' and the finish, with a touch of spice and honey toning down the fresh acidity, is long. 12.5% alc. $19.90. 8Jan2008.
Brightly aromatic on the nose. Dry, crisp and austere with nervy, spine tingling acidity on first tasting but almost immediately you notice the increasing weighty richness of the palate. There's a talcy layer, like you find in many Aussie dry Rieslings, and a fine lime infusion to the more dominant lemon and green apple flavours. The fruit is ripe and juicy with zesty spice and honeysuckle florals. Just 3 grams of residual sugar It's altogether a beautifully balanced drop. 10Oct2008.

Ruby Bay SV Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Quite malic on first sniff - malic and earthy. Kero notes soon emerge. Very crisp, dry and apple-like in palate with a spicy richness to the texture, it seems a high acid wine with a touch of sweetness to balance it. This is a wine that improves and improves and after a week of trying a taste each day, it morphed into this most amazing wine. It's crisp, dry, spicy and nutty with a touch of sweetness adding richness to the finish and grapefruit lingering on the aftertaste. 10% alc. 14g/l rs. $22. 8Jan2008.

Saint Clair Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) A medium style with tropical fruit, honeysuckle, juicy apple and citrus. Medium bodied and full of verve with a tickle gingery zest. It reminds me of a drink my sister sometimes makes and what I call 'Mock Riesling'. She makes that out of apple ginger and lemon. Serve chilled but not overly chilled because that just makes it a little tart. 12.5% alc. $20. 15Jan2009.

Saint Clair Pioneer Block 9 Big John Riesling 2007 (sc) A fresh juicy wine, full of apple, citrus, ginger and tropical fruit with a reasonable amount of residual sweetness but finely attuned balancing acidity. This is a wine that can be chilled to the bones and still seduce the palate. The label states 'off dry in a German Spatlese style. 10 % alc, 45 g/l rs, 9.5 g/l TA. $24.95. 8Jan2008.

Pale straw gold. Delectably perfumed and floral on the nose this gorgeous low alcohol style is full of sweet lemon and mandarin with a zesty ginger-like spiciness and a honeysuckle lusciousness. Served lightly chilled, it's incredibly juicy and has sweetness and acidity that combines in perfect harmony. 10% alc. $22.99. 3Jun2009.

Saint Clair Vicar's Choice Marlborough Riesling 2007(sc) This is a softer style of Riesling with sweeter citrus fruit that sits in the mandarin / orange spectrum. It has a fresh zestiness and a spritzy tropical sherbet tingle. Fresh juicy and quite light, which makes it a refreshing late afternoon or aperitif style of drink. Best of all it is not overly tart when chilled. 12.5% alc. $20. 17Jan2009.

Seresin Memento Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Bright, fresh and clean with lime, lemon zest and honeysuckle aromas and tropical fruit and sweet citrus flavours. Light to medium-bodied, off dry, slightly spritzig, with an oily, lightly viscous nuance to the texture. Very appealing and approachable. 11% alc. 45g/l rs. $27.50. 10Jan2008.

Spy Valley Envoy Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Light, bright, fresh and fruity - even though well chilled it is a little sweet but has plenty of tangy acidity to balance it. Just perfect for an early autumn picnic lunch. Flavours hint of sweet lemon, ie lemonade with hints of grapefruit. Lovely light touch from the low alcohol with vinous viscosity. 9% alc. 56.2 g/l rs. $28.90. 29Mar2009.

Spy Valley Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) A slightly sweetish wine, thick textured with a delicate honeyed viscosity to the smooth flowing texture and lots of fresh, bright, zesty spice. Very clean, very refreshing, made at a moderate sweetness level that will have very wide appeal and with refreshing acidity (8 grams per litre) that makes the finish seem more on the edge of dry. 15g/l rs. 12% alc. $20. 8Jan2008.

Sugar Loaf Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Just bottled, quite tight with limey fruit and a honeyed richness enmerging. Lovely palate structure. Has potential. 13% alc. 7g/l rs, $17. 5Sep2007.

The Crater Rim Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Water pale, sweetish and youthful with bubble gum and citrus aromas, this low alcohol style is light and clean with honey baked apples and a delicate infusion of lime. Very pure and focussed with a long, piecing finish, this wine that has all the potential to become a classic. 9.5% alc. $19.99. 30Jan2008.
Pale straw with a glint of lime, the delicate citrus blossom scent is initially quite restrained. It’s very sweet, very linear, limey and honeyed with malic green apple and baked apples flavours taking over the finish. Vinfanticide to drink right now but all the indications are that it will be very long loved so it needs to be nurtured in the cellar right now. 9.5% alc. $19.99. 19Mar2008.

Te Mania Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) A full-bodied, powerful Riesling, assertive from the outset. Conentrated lime and hints of bitter marmalade on the nose, spicy and zesty in the palate and full of Roses lime, it's a little reminiscent of Dry Australian Riesling - a hint of 'kero' perhaps, and talc, with firm acid grip and fruit sweetness on the lingering finish. Label says off dry and notes say it has 10 grams/litre of residaul sugar but it comes across as a dry Riesling. It seems like a wine that can only flourish in the bottle. 13.5% alc. $17.95. 3Apr2009.

Valli Otago Old Vine Riesling 2007 (sc) An intensely citrus smelling Riesling - full of the zest and juice of mandarin, lemon and juicy lime. Such a bright, fresh, zesty little number - it dances a whirl of lime sherbet and a touch of ground coriander spice on the tongue - perhaps a hint of kero and an earthy steely intensity with the vinous impression becoming richer and richer. The intense citrus lingers nicely for such a long time and there's a momentary suggestion of tangelo and coriander with a honeyed sweetness. Then that racy acidity kicks in again with lemon and honey the lasting impression. Made from some of Central Otago's oldest Riesling vines that grown in the legendary Black Ridge Vineyard (planted 1980) in Alexandra. 13% alc. $26. 21Jul2009.

Villa Maria Cellar Selection Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Very pale with a glint of green-gold, there's sherbet and fizzy fruit lolly aromas with subtle lime zest and hints of honeysuckle. Zesty, fragrant and full of crisp acidity with green apple flavours, a hint of anise and a lightly oily texture, it initially seems quite dry but it's actually a medium style. 11.5% alc. 10g/l residual sugar. $21.99.5Mar2008.

Vynfields Classic Dry Martinborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Served chilled, this has a lime Riesling purity in the scent with a talc-wash overlay. The talc/lime theme carries through to the dry, racy palate with increasing richness and complexity of flavour. Quite delicately scented with rich, intense flavours. 18/20. 13.5% alc. 14Oct2008.

Waimea Estate Spinyback Riesling 2007 (sc) Even though it has 15.1g/l rs, this smells dry and full of talc and limes on the nose. A touch of spritz accompanies the vibrantly citrussy flavours to the mouth - it's full of juicy tangelo with a squeeze of lime and grapefruit and a floral overtone to the gently sweetish finish. Crisp and refreshing - even more so when chilled. 11.5% alc. 15g/l rs. $14.90. 26Dec2008.

Waimea Nelson Bolitho SV Riesling 2007 (sc) Deep citrine in colour with butterscotch and nut nuances to the floral scent. Lovely richness and complexity to the taste with buttered toast, lemon and a mellowness that comes with age yet the acidity is still fresh, balancing the sweetness and adding classic Riesling brightness to the end with marmalade-like nuances lingering. Lower alcohol style with loads and loads of flavour and drinking beautifully four years on from vintage 11.5% alc. $21.90. 16Dec2011.

Waimea Classic Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Lemon gold. Concentrated 'classic' Riesling aroma - smells quite dry with rich, toasty, lime curd scents. The immediate thing that hits you with this wine is its texture. Fine and smooth, it tells you it's there in a haunting way. A deep, earthy, concentrated style of Riesling - lime, red apple and then ginger-like spices dance on the tongue and the tropical finish hints of that sweetness and the toastiness detected on the nose lingers on the concentrated finish. Excellent length too. Heaps more yums. Has a bittersweetness, like you get in guava. 11% alc. 15 g/l rs. 18.5/20. $17.90. 19Apr2009.

Waipara Hills Equinox Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Light gold coloured with a fairly restrained apple blossom bouquet a contrast to the rich, mature flavour. Almost unctuous with a lovely delicate seam of zest and toastiness that makes it rounded and complete. A gentle hint of sweetness and a juicy tropical fruit aftertaste has the mouth salivating for more. Riesling aficionados will love this. 11.1% alc. $17.99. 19Oct2011.

Waipara Hills Waipara Riesling 2007 (sc) Fruity and fragrant with dried tropical fruit scents, it's clean and bright to the taste with moderate acidity, a touch of oiliness to the texture, the slightest hint of toast, youthful bubble gum esters and loads of juicy tangelo with honeysuckle and a lime-infused finish. A delicious fruity style that will have wide appeal. 11.7% alc. $16.99. 13Feb2008.
Very pale lemon-tinged gold with a hint of green, this light, juicy off dry Riesling has perfumed aromatics and apricot nuances to the juicy tropical fruit and lime flavours. Initially seems quite sweet but the citrus acidity cuts through the sugar for a drying sensation to the crisp, clean finish. 11.7% alc. $16.99. 19Mar2008.
Pale straw. Floral and a little honeyed with tropical fruit and lemon pith scents. A slightly sweet attack, soft and gentle. Grapefruit, cherimoya, honeysuckle and lime fill the palate and linger with a gentle sweetness. 11.7% alc. $16.99. 25Feb2009.

Whitehaven Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) Very pale straw, it's quite well chilled so just a little closed on the nose but there's nothing chilly about the powerful, bright, citrussy zesty flavours. Juicy limes and apples, a touch of pith and a smidgen of honey make this a very thirst-quenching summery wine. 14.5% alc. $20.99. 10Oct2007.
Light lemon gold with floral aromas and apples and citrus flavours, this seems fairly dry but the 7.4g/l residual sugar content places it on the cusp of medium and once again it is the racy acidity, accentuated by chilling, that makes the wine seems dry. It's lightly oily and viscous with a marmalade richness and simply begging for food. 12.5% alc. $20.99. 12Dec2007.

Wild South Marlborough Riesling 2007 (sc) A rich, fruity style with noticeable sweetness and weight and richness from the moderately high alcohol, there's toasty lime, pineapple, toffee and honey with grapefruit like acidity emerging on the finish. 13.5% alc. $17.90. 10Jan2008.

Woollaston Nelson Riesling 2007 (sc) Rich gold colour. Creamy marmalade on the nose, smooth in the palate, a sweeter wine that suits chilling, perhaps too sweet and cloying to start - where is the acidity. Sweet citrus - tangelo, lemonade fruit and tropical fruit with a delicate honeyed backbone and honeysuckle and citrus blossom on the finish. soft sweetish start, mellow mid palate, slightly astringent flinty finish where the more classic lime/ honey characters assert themselves. 16/20. 13% alc. 8.5 g/l rs. $19. 19Apr2009.

[younger] [2012/2011/2010/2009] [2008] [2007] [2006/2005] [2004] [2003] [2002] [2001] [2000 and older] [index]

Index to Varietal Tastings
Chardonnay Gewurztraminer
Riesling
Pinot Gris Sauvignon Blanc Other Whites
Bubblies Sweeties Pinks
Cabernet dominant Merlot dominant Pinotage
Pinot Noir Shiraz Other Reds

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