Dry rieslings and those from older vintages most impressed the judges at this year’s tasting, writes JOHN SAKER.
RIESLING USUALLY dominates the highlight reel of a Cuisine aromatics tasting. This year the variety was noticeably less dominant, mostly because of the challenging nature of the 2017 vintage. “It wasn’t the strongest showing we’ve had from riesling,” said panel chair John Belsham. “Too many of the younger wines were heavy-handed and lacked balance.” Simon Nunns expressed a preference for the drier styles from the 2017 vintage: “Phenolic management was clearly critical in 2017 and many of the medium wines were more grippy, with tougher textures. The dry wines I generally liked a lot more.” Once again, riesling’s ability to age was on display at this tasting. Four different vintages featured in our top five – two of them from the excellent 2014. The oldest among them, a 2011, is a
wonderful advertisement for the benefits that come with cellaring quality riesling..
For this New Zealand riesling tasting, John Belsham, an international wine judge and owner of Foxes Island Wines in Marlborough, was joined by Simon Nunns, winemaker at Coopers Creek, and John Saker, author and Cuisine wine writer.
All wines are tasted blind. If, after discussion, the tasters do not agree on a star rating, the wine will receive the rating given by the majority but dissenting comments will be included in the wine notes. The scores of winemaker judges cannot exceed those of other judges.
This rendition stood out for its fruit purity – “not a bad …2
This older wine is holding beautifully. The aromatics are toasty and dignified, …3
This boutique label has established a quality reputation across all the styles …4
Perennially a label that punches well above its asking price, this Cellar …5