Best Australian Riesling Wine
Australia is the world’s fourth largest producer of this noble variety and we make some of the best there is. The style of Australian Riesling these days is not sweet and fruity, but is instead dry and citrusy. Riesling is all about preserving the pristine purity of the grape.
Riesling is a late ripening, aromatic white wine with high levels of acidity. Australian Riesling is drier than German, Alsatian and New Zealand examples. Australian Riesling was revolutionised in the 1950s, when Orlando’s Colin Gramp pioneered the use of refrigeration, which allowed winemakers to preserve the variety’s delicate aromatics and fresh fruit flavours.
The best quality Australian Riesling is grown in cool regions with an extended ripening season and cool nights, for acid retention. These conditions allow the development of delicate aromatics, a greater range and concentration of flavours, moderate alcohol and high acid levels.
Learn more about Australian Riesling and its wine regions
What does Australian Riesling taste like?
Young Riesling typically shows citrus and apple fruit aromas and flavours, with varying degrees of floral and mineral characters and high levels of fresh acidity. While they drink beautifully on release, many also have good cellaring potential. Bottle age enables their acidity to soften and the development of complex toasty and honey characters.
Best Australian Riesling wine regions
The Clare and Eden Valleys consistently produce superb age-worthy Rieslings over a long period making them benchmark regions for the variety. Some superb Riesling is also produced in pockets of Victoria, Western Australia and Tasmania, which are worth seeking out.
Clare valley Riesling
With a long history of producing distinctive, age-worthy Riesling, the Clare Valley is Australia’s greatest Riesling region. Within the region, there are defined sub-regions that consistently produces characteristic Rieslings of outstanding quality with the ability to develop with cellaring.
Riesling was the varietal that led our screwcap revolution. A remarkable quality of Riesling is that it along with Hunter Semillon; it is practically the only white varietal that age gracefully. Zesty and citrusy young, it can develop in the bottle to show gorgeous honey, toast characters after a number of years. As was discovered in these instances, cork is an inferior closure to the Stelvin cap and so, in 2001, the Riesling growers in the Clare Valley united and bottled the entire Riesling vintage under screwcap.
Eden Valley Riesling
The high altitude and cool climate of the Eden Valley is suited to Rieslings which are typically elegant, fragrant and finely structured. The best examples are capable of long ageing and developing toasty overtones.
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Best food pairings for Riesling
With its high levels of acidity and citrusy characters, Riesling is a perfect match with a variety of seafood dishes. It is also a food-friendly wine to serve with spicy Asian-style dishes like Thai and Korean, plus deliciously moreish Middle Eastern.
Best wine glass for Riesling
Typically, lighter-bodied white wines like Riesling are best served in a glass with a smaller bowl. This helps to keep it cool and helps to concentrate and amplify the floral aromatics of these delicate styles.
With so many sizes, shapes and styles, choosing the right wine glass can be a little daunting. Check out our guide to wine glasses here