This aromatic little number from Mr. Riggs gives a nod to the wines of Germany with his 'giant' Riesling (Ein Riese means giant in German). It's citrusy, apple-like and floral, with a palate that has some richness and sweetness to it. It's all supported by racy acidity that leads to a crunchy, bright finish. It slips down easy, and would be great with Thai food.
History: None excites Ben more than old-world style Riesling. ‘A Giant’ among wines. In this vein, he thought it only fitting that we give the eighth vintage of his silky smooth Adelaide Hills gem an appropriate name. ‘Ein Riese’ is German for ‘a giant’, perfect for a giant, German style Riesling, don’t you think? Whatever you decide, Mr. Riggs will be really happy if you take pleasure from his rendition, old-world German style Riesling. Perhaps his favourite creation: crisp, sweet and fresh.
Vineyards: For years Ben has had his eyes peeled to find the perfect cold-climate vineyard from which to source high quality fruit to make a German style, off-dry Riesling. The ‘Yacca Paddock’ vineyard is just that spot: Scott Hicks and Kerry Heysen-Hicks’ vineyard, situated in the Kuitpo region of the southern Mount Lofty ranges in the Adelaide Hills, South Australia. At approximately 360 metres above sea level, the Yacca Paddock vineyard is on average 2.5 degrees cooler than McLaren Vale. Planted on very old podsolic soils over an ironstone/gravel base, the vineyard is mainly north/northeast facing, which allows the vines greater access to the morning sun, essential for ripening. Vines are planted primarily to a ballerina shoot position trellis, which helps open up the canopy to expose fruit to sunlight and ensure even ripening. Vines are moderately narrow planted, to 2.75 metre rows with 1.5 metre between vines in each panel. Plantings are the Geisenheim 140 clone, which was chosen specifically for its flavour profile.
Wine: Made as an off-dry German style Riesling, the grapes were handpicked and whole bunch pressed. The grapes were harvested early to ensure that the resultant juice was low in phenolics. The juice was cold-settled though left a little cloudy – this left some solids for the fermentation process to enhance complexity and texture. Fermentation was continued until a perfect balance between alcohol, acid, sugar and flavour was reached, at which point the wine was chilled to halt fermentation. After clarifying, the wine was bottled and released. It almost makes itself! A delicate nose with floral notes and citrus blossom, with an entrancing combination of sweetness, crispiness and tang on the palate. This wine is finely balanced through natural acidity, and is Ben’s tribute to the wine style he most admires.