Spring -Summer 2016 Newsletter
2016 WATERVALE RIESLING
Stephanie Toole’s 2016 Mount Horrocks Rieslings (Watervale and Cordon Cut) are
outstanding; two of her best yet. Year in year out, they are of consistent high
quality, amongst the best examples of their style produced in Australia. 2016
however is special.
“It was an idyllic season”, explains Stephanie. “We had beautiful blue clear skies
through the growing period, a touch of rain just when it was needed and finished
with an even ripening period. To me, 2016 is special because these conditions
allowed the characteristics of that vineyard site to show through very clearly.”
The remote, isolated Mount Horrocks Watervale Riesling vineyard is in the north
eastern corner of the famous Clare Valley subregion, planted on the very edge
of highly prized red soil over limestone, surrounded completely by cattle grazing
This estate owned site produces amazing fruit every year however, recently, the
benefits of conversion to organics have become more pronounced. In 2016 the
vines were very healthy, delivering a slightly smaller crop with early, excellent
flavour development. No additions or finings were required throughout the
This means it is a vegetarian and vegan friendly wine – a bonus for some!
Hand-picked over 2 separate days in early February, the fruit was delivered within
hours to the winery where the berries were gently crushed and free-run juice, the
only component used to make this wine, was extracted.
Many critics describe her Riesling as ‘a classic Watervale’, yet Stephanie feels
this is also a distinctively Mount Horrocks style; her vineyard contributing both
generosity and ‘line’.
Classically pale and bright. Super-fragrant – floral aromatics leap from the glass.
Crunchy crisp lemon-lime juiciness, steely, slate mineral tones and a really long
line of acidity. It’s pristine, pretty, delicate and rounded yet with the strength
(backbone) to age for years to come: 15 years plus. Stunning.
PRAISE FOR THE 2015
The best Mount Horrocks Riesling so far tasted. It has a blossom-filled bouquet,
but best of all, an exquisitely poised palate, juicy lime/lemon fruit in a filigree
bright acidity, leaving the mouth at peace with the world.
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2017
While Mount Horrocks Cordon Cut is produced from estate owned vineyards,
it differs from the other wines because it is produced from two vineyards: the
Watervale vineyard on the slopes of Mount Horrocks and the Auburn vineyard
located close to cellar door.
‘Cordon Cut’ refers to the rare and risky practice of cutting the canes (‘cordons’)
and allowing the fruit to concentrate naturally in the vineyard. There is no
botrytis cinerea, the noble rot that many dessert wines rely upon. The result is a
clean, fresh and lively wine.
The process naturally concentrates both flavour and sugar levels and the decision
to pick is made by Stephanie based on both appearance and taste. Intimate
knowledge of the process, rather than technical analysis, is critical.
Bright pale gold, tighter aromatics than usual taking time to open in the glass,
then wow! Floral and citrus Riesling aromas, intense and spicy.
Delicious light lemon curd and vanilla notes, distinctive sweet lime and pear juice,
at once delicate and intense, sensual on the tongue, long and fine, beautifully
balanced and more-ish. Comfortably a ten-plus cellaring proposition but I defy
you to see it last that long.
PRAISE FOR THE 2015
2015 will go down among the greatest and longest-lived Cordon Cuts, a
benchmark that achieves complexity and concentration while upholding an
exceptional, enduring acid line rarely seen in Australian dessert wines. Primary
lemon and lime with lifted lily notes take the limelight, with honey and spice
lurking in the background. Line and length are outstanding.
Tyson Stelzer, Halliday Wine Companion Magazine April/May 2016
|AUTUMN – WINTER 2016 NEWSLETTER
EDITOR: DARREN JAHN
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