The Oenophiliac

A Wine Writers View on the World of Wine. Formerly Magics Wine Guide and Reviews for Newbies

Australian Riesling head and shoulders above New Zealand: Decanter panel


Australian Riesling is infinitely superior to New Zealand’s, according to a Decanter panel of eight New World Riesling experts.

Skillogalee

Skillogalee: ‘multi-dimensional’

Earlier this year the panel tasted 79 Australian and 55 New Zealand Rieslings from a variety of vintages, the majority from 2010 and 2009 with a handful of vintages going back to 2005 and earlier.

The wines came from all Riesling-producing regions of the two countries. The vast majority of Australian wines were from the Adelaide Hills, and Clare and Eden Valleys, while most New Zealand Rieslings were from Marlborough, with a few from Central Otago, Nelson and other regions.

The results were overwhelmingly in Australia’s favour. All of the eight five-star wines were Australian, and 29 of the 37 four-star wines.

During the panel discussion the critics – including the Wine Society’s Australian buyer Pierre Mansour, Luke Robertson, head sommelier of the London’s Michelin-strarred The Ledbury, and consultant David Wainwright – were unanimous: Australian Riesling is ‘compelling’ and ‘absolutely outstanding’.

The panel urged readers to lay the best wines down. ‘They will compare with the great wines of Alsace at a fraction of the price,’ one panellist said.

The five-star wines included SkillogaleePikesEldredge and Bethany – all except the latter from Clare Valley.

Skillogalee was ‘Delicious, complex and multi-dimensional,’ the panel said.

Meanwhile, across the Tasman Sea, ‘the general lament was that the New Zealand Rieslings were too inconsistent’ Amy Wislocki writes in her introduction to the tasting in the September issue of Decanter.

The wines were ‘disjointed’ and often too sweet. Mansour said they had a ‘confected’ quality.

However, both Wainwright and critic Sarah Ahmed defended New Zealand, the former pointing out that its Riesling producers were still getting established and suggesting it would be interesting to do the same tasting in 20 years.

Ahmed urged readers to try the 2008 vintage before dismissing New Zealand Riesling. ‘There were some exceptional wines here,’ she said.

In particular the panel praised the four-star AstrolabePalliser Estate andFelton Road.

Read the full panel tasting results in the September issue of Decanter magazine, out 3 August.

Story by Adam Lechmere

Courtesy of Decanter

 www.decanter.com

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on July 22, 2011 by in News..

Archives

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,737 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 67,171 hits
%d bloggers like this: