Two great Aussie Rieslings
Two very impressive Australian Rieslings tasted together. I don't drink a lot of Aussie Riesling, and sometimes I admire it more than I enjoy it, but these two worked for me. The Howard Park is fresher, more delicate and a little more focused; the Petaluma has more richness, power and weight. Both are exceptionally good.
Howard Park Riesling 2007 Great Southern, Western Australia
I reckon this is one of Australia’s very best Rieslings. It has a beautifully expressive, elegant limey nose, with a bit of floral perfume. The palate is bone dry but not at all phenolic or rough, with concentrated, delicate (but not fragile) citrussy, minerally fruit. There’s a hint of grippy tannin on the finish, which is pretty dry and perhaps a little bitter (but not overly so). A versatile, stylish and potentially long-lived Riesling of great appeal. 12.5% alcohol. 92/100 (£12.50 Bibendum)
Petaluma Hanlin Hill Riesling 2007 Clare Valley, Australia
A drought vintage, with much warmer temperatures than the average (heat summation 1556 degree days versus long-term average of 1332 degree days), but this is still a superb wine. Attractive lime and tangerine peel nose is fresh and balanced. The palate is hugely concentrated with a dry citrus-pith character and minerally length. There’s some real richness and power here, but the delicacy of the variety persists. A beautifully balanced wine with some real weight and potential for further development. 13.5% alcohol. 92/100 (£10.99 Oddbins)