Pewsey Vale Riesling Tanya introduces us to another amazing drop

‘Pewsey Vale is one of the great Riesling vineyards of the world. Where a true alliance between nature and variety exists, the need for human intervention is minimal. Gentle guiding hands and an understanding of place are all that is needed to create consistent and delicious wines… vintage after vintage.’ - LOUISA ROSE, WINEMAKER 2017

Earlier this month I had the privilege of being invited by owner, Robert Hill Smith to the 170th Anniversary of the first Riesling plantings of Pewsey Vale Vineyard, Eden Valley in South Australia.

What an experience! Our first event was held at fermentAsian restaurant in Tanunda, Barossa. I arrived at the restaurant with no idea what to expect, because the two days of events were kept a very close secret. The intimate dinner for around 40 guests included some legends of the Australian wine industry, James Halliday, Max Allen, Judy Sarris, Jane Faulkner and Jeremy Oliver, just to name a few. The room was full of sommeliers and restaurateurs from around Australia. The dinner was a degustation experience matched only with Riesling - 19 to be exact. Wine from Alsace, Mosel, Saar and of course, Pewsey vale. The oldest vintage we tasted that night was a 1983 Scharzhofberger Auslese, Riesling. My two favourite wines of the night were the 1983 German Riesling and the 1981 Riesling.

The next morning we were bused out to the vineyard to taste Riesling produced only in the Pewsey Vale vineyard. Pewsey Vale’s single focus is Riesling. I had the privilege of sitting next to the winemaker, Louisa Rose and opposite James Halliday. This morning our first bracket consisted of a 1967, 1968, 1975, 1982 Pewsey Vale Riesling and a 1995, 1997 and 1999 Pewsey Vale contours Riesling. I wont go on - you get the picture. I have never tasted such beautiful wine. Being under a marquee tasting world class wine in the middle of the Contours Vineyard was a once in a life time experience.

After our tasting, we had a walk through the vineyard where we were greeted with SA oysters and the launch of the 2017 1961 block Riesling. The winemaker suggested I pour a little of my Riesling onto my oyster. Wow! I will never eat oysters again without a splash of Riesling.

Riesling in Australia is quite misunderstood. It is a great food wine with lovely fruit characteristics. Here at Michel’s we will carry three Pewsey Vale Rieslings:

Pewsey Vale Vineyard – The Contours 2011.
The contours block was planted in 1965. This part of the vineyard produces a much finer wine than the rest of the vineyard. Wine harvested from this block is held in the bottle for 5 years before it is released for sale. This vintage has fresh lime juice overlaid with toasted brioche, sage oil and lemongrass. It will age gracefully.

Pewsey Vale Vineyard – 1961 block Riesling – coming soon
The block 1961 is a new wine from old vines. It has lemon myrtle and tea tree blossom, with seamless minerality. It is an ageless wine which will drink well with youth and longevity. Don’t forget to try a splash of Riesling on our always fresh SA oysters.

Pewsey Vale Vineyard – The Contours Riesling 10 year release – coming soon
This is a beautiful, mature riesling with a full, bright yellow hue and a rich and alluring buttered-toast bouquet. Next time you are in and ask for a NZ Sauvignon Blanc, I may just talk you into a Pewsey Vale Riesling. You will not be disappointed.