Monday, June 29, 2015

Sleek, Delicious Riesling from New Zealand's Giesen Estate

Giesen Estate 2013 Riesling Marlborough, New Zealand ($13) 

I'm a firm believer that latitude is a huge factor in growing great Riesling grapes. Most of the best German Riesling comes from about 49-50 degrees N. Most California Riesling is pretty boring and flat by comparison, and it is grown mainly in the 30-40 degree N range. New Zealand's far southern reaches extend to about 47 degrees S, and Marlborough is located around 42 degrees S, which might not be as extreme as Germany's wine growing latitude, but is at least getting into the range where you can make really focused, sleek wines from the grape. This 2013, Riesling made by three brothers who emigrated to New Zealand from Germany in the 1980's might just make you a believer in NZ Riesling. It's gut-level delicious, but it's more than that. It has laser-like acidity, precise green apple, kiwi fruit, nectarine and apricot flavors and just a touch of sweetness that perfectly balances the wine's acidity. It's a wine that you simply can't put down, and just the type of thing to pair with Indian or Maylasian food or other things that aren't an easy fit for wine. I cannot recommend this wine more highly! 93 points

For more info, click HERE.

As a side note, I would also recommend Giesen's Sauvignon Blanc, which can run with just about anything from this great Sauvignon region, as well as the crisp, slightly spicy Pinot Gris, which also delivers exceptional value. Keep an eye out for this label. I hadn't had their wine in a while, but from what I've tasted lately, they're killing it.

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