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Watervale is one of the marquee sub-regions of the Clare Valley. It's a region known for its elite fruit purity, particularly in Riesling. This 2016 Riesling from Stephanie Toole at Mount Horrocks typifies this wine style. This organically grown fruit is some of the best the region has to offer and is consistently ranked amongst the top echelon of Australian Riesling. This is one of the finest releases of Mount Horrocks Riesling in their impressive history. With 96 points from Campbell Mattinson, he rates this the highest of the 12 vintages he has tried since 2002. It's a blistering wine, built as much for longevity as excellent drinking in its youth. Impeccable Clare Valley Riesling at its best. A Riesling purists dream.
What it Tastes Like
"This is a stunning riesling. So dry, so slatey, so well fruited, so charming and so long. It’s Clare to its back teeth. Lemon-lime, florals, spice and that characteristic bath salts character. The purity and the sheer deliciousness of the citrus flavours on offer here deserve a mention in the dictionary beside the word: gorgeous." - Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Front)
96 points. "I’ve seen some high praise of the 2016 Clare Valley riesling vintage but in general, from my own tastings, it’s seemed like the normal, regular, good quality vintage but nothing to really shout about. Certainly there are a lot of rieslings from the 2016 season that are their usual same selves, nothing more, nothing less. But this Mount Horrocks riesling from the Watervale sub-district has me wondering whether there’s a bit more to the praise than I’d previously thought. This is a stunning riesling. So dry, so slatey, so well fruited, so charming and so long. It’s Clare to its back teeth. Lemon-lime, florals, spice and that characteristic bath salts character. The purity and the sheer deliciousness of the citrus flavours on offer here deserve a mention in the dictionary beside the word: gorgeous." - Campbell Mattinson (The Wine Front)
Mount Horrocks Watervale Riesling 2016 The Mount Horrocks Watervale Riesling vineyard, in the north eastern corner of this famous Clare Valley subregion, is planted on the very edge of the highly rized red soil over limestone. Surrounded completely by open land where cattle graze, its relative isolation benefits the strict application of organic practices which Stephanie has adopted. “I really enjoy vintage and the weeks leading up to picking” says Stephanie, “the time spent every morning in the vineyard, sampling and tasting the fruit is my favourite. The decision to pick is so important because I have such small quantities to work with and its so valuable,it is imperative I get it right.” Once the decision is made, a team of 25 pickers hand harvest the crop within two days, while it’s at that critical point of ripeness. Every few hours, as the harvesting continues, a small truck shuttles the grapes to the winery to process the freshly picked fruit. After removal of stalks and gentle crushing, the free-run juice is separated – the only component used for Mount Horrocks wines. With exclusively free run juice used Stephanie has, for decades, found it unnecessary to fine any wine made, meaning all of Stephanie’s wines not only qualify for European organic wine status, they are also vegan and vegetarian friendly. An outstanding limited release Riesling of the highest echelon, regularly acknowledged among the finest in Australia and admired around the world. Tasting Notes Classically pale and bright. Super-fragrant – floral aromatics leap from the glass. Crunchy crisp lemon-lime juiciness, steely, slate mineral tones and a really long line of acidity. It’s pristine, pretty, delicate and rounded yet with the strength (backbone) to age for years to come: 15 years plus. Stunning.
Closure: Screw Cap
Bottle Size: 750ml
The Clare Valley knows what it does, and does it very, very well. Riesling and Shiraz are the rockstars of the region and with some of the most famous wines in the county coming from this small pocket of SA, the Clare’s reputation for quality only grows year on year.
Riesling is the king of white grapes. With unparalleled versatility, it rightfully carries the ‘Noble’ name tag. We make extraordinary Riesling in Australia, from far and wide. From the classic searing, razor-sharp styles in the Clare and Eden Valleys to the fragrant and enchanting wines of the Great Southern, Australian Riesling is a chameleon that can take on many forms. Sweet, steely, lean or textured, the world of Riesling is a thing of wonder that should be explored by all true lovers of wine.
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