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2016 Howard Park Porongurup Riesling

Cracka Value Rating
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Cracka Review

These cracking Porongurup old vines have yet again delivered a Riesling lovers delight! Crisp, dry and textural, flinty minerality and lemony acid is perfectly balanced with the wonderful floral hints of citrus blossom. Fantastic intensity, that finishes very long, and one that we know will leave a long lasting impression on the clique of Riesling drinkers looking for another example, of what most of them believe is the best value varietal made in Australia.

Winemaker's Notes

Vintage: Vintage at Burch Family Wines is a protracted event which commences each February and concludes in April. It is a time of frenetic activity, excitement and lots of weather watching. In all cropping pursuits, the weather over the ripening period comes under increased scrutiny the closer one gets to harvest. During this annual progression of the seasons, the quality and style of each vintage evolves.

The 2016 vintage in the Great Southern commenced on 6th February with the harvest of Pinot Noir for Grand Jeté and concluded on 10th April with the harvest of the Abercrombie Cabernet Sauvignon.

In this cool continental climate, the winter of 2015 was mild with sufficient rains to replenish catchments. The spring, less blustery than preceding years, gave way to a hot start to summer. When veraison began, in mid-January, the native marri blossom was curiously absent. The ‘bird pressure’ as we call it, can have a significant impact on quality, quantity and stress levels. As summer passed into autumn, the more southerly of the sub-regions, Mount Barker and Porongurup, spent the vintage period in and out of humid on-shore streams with rainfall to April, and twice the average.

In review, the quality of the 2016 vintage ranges from good to great across all varieties, thanks to the diligent efforts of our vineyard team to select only the best grapes under challenging circumstances. It is a vintage like 2016 that tests our collective expertise to create good outcomes. Under such pressure, the necessary changes to picking criteria can yield unexpected, positive results and the opportunity to acquire new knowledge from the experience.

The Site: The awesomely scenic and wildly remote Porongurup sub-region of the Great Southern produces fine and linear Riesling with great varietal purity and exactness. This region takes its name from the ancient, granitic boulder-like domes that rise 670m above sea level to dominate the surrounding landscape.

Our vineyard sits at an elevation of 333m on the warm north-facing shoulder of this volcanic outcrop in ancient karri loam soils.

Technical Notes: Each vineyard block is vinified separately in stainless steel tanks. After settling bright, the free run juice is racked before a long and cold fermentation which preserves regional character and delicate fruit flavours. Blending occurs in June of the vintage year, with the objective of showcasing the typicity of each site in the final wine.

Tasting Notes: A shimmering silver yellow in colour with delicate citrus blossom, green pear skin and wet stone notes. The palate has a spring water weight with fine flavours of yellow and green citrus fruits gently textured with mineral dust. This is a delicate and fine wine with great fruit purity and finesse.

Cellaring: In its youth, the Porongurup Riesling is bracing and bright in style, full of fresh fruit, a mineral texture and fine acidity. In time, the wine will develop a nut praline and poached citrus richness whilst retaining its linear acidity and stone-like minerality. Howard Park Rieslings will cellar for more than 10 years.

Alc/vol: 12.0%

expert reviews about

2016 Howard Park Porongurup Riesling

Expert Reviews

Jeremy Oliver (2016 Vintage) says
2028 - 2036
Campbell Mattinson (2016 Vintage) says
It makes a clear quality statement. It hits, it powers, it drives, it lingers. It’s half-hearted on the nose but it’s all go go go from there. Bursting with grapefruit and citrus, particularly through the finish. Textbook stuff.
2018 - 2025+
James Halliday (2015 Vintage) says
From the former Gibraltar Rock Vineyard, one of the two oldest in Porongurup, acquired by Burch Family in '10. The wine has changed (for the better) since Sept '15, its flowery blossom bouquet introducing a palate that comes thundering home on the finish, with all banners flying well into the aftertaste.
Drink by 2026
James Halliday (2014 Vintage) says
From one of the two oldest vineyards in the Porongurup subregion. The flowery bouquet leads into a fine, yet intense palate typical of young Porongurup riesling; lime zest and vibrant minerally acidity run the length of the beautifully balanced palate. The end point of this lovely wine is far distant, likely later than '34
now till 2034
Australian Wine Companion

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