Summer's well and truly arrived in Adelaide, so it's about time I started seriously smashing down some new season's rieslings (responsibly smashing, of course). Over the next 3 nights I'll be looking at 3 of my very favourite Australian riesling labels - from 3 completely different states. The first model down the runway is a Canberra classic celebrating its 40th anniversary, from a maker that's probably better known for other things.
A little withdrawn and youthful yet rather stylish and blessed by a tight, steely minerality and a note of talcum powder, Clonakilla's 2011 blows a calm air of gentle, floral lavender scents over its cleanly restrained varietal fruits, which reflect white pear/apple flesh and lime pith. In a fashion typical of young riesling, its shapely, persistent palate actually contradicts its calm aromatics, by releasing a more sour-citric flavour profile empowered by its youthful intensity and brashness. It's long, racy and assertive, growing with a mouth-puckering sourness that does suggest some sweet 'n' sour aspects, but it's saved by an impressively long finish, drawn out by vivacious, lemony acids and a cascading flow of lime juice.
ü Perhaps moving away from some of Clonakilla's recent, chalkier offerings (which were probably more my style), the 2011 is a more sour-citric, yet varietally intense riesling, crafted well from a cool, wet season and set well for the cellar. Having said that, there certainly isn't anything wrong with cracking one now, especially if the mercury's creeping towards 100. Drink to 2021.