Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Bronze Medal and another superb review!

It's often said that good reviews and/or medals aren't enough to sell your wine, that it still depends on legwork. Well, our legwork for October has been James working tirelessly in the vineyard, and it is looking very tidy for it, and mine has been again, processing orders. I am simply amazed at the interest in our wines since the reviews of the past few months and again, I have more wonderful news to announce.

Firstly, on the weekend, we found out that we won a Bronze Medal for our 2009 Eden Valley Riesling at the
2009 Canberra International Riesling Challenge. It was our first ever entry into this well-respected wine show so it was an incredible surprise.

Secondly, last night I found yet another sensational review for the same wine. This one is from Philip White, a renown wine-journalist from South Australia. Philip has spent much of his time recently focusing on terroir, as you will note in his review from his website Drankster below.

Karra Yerta Wines 2009 Eden Valley Riesling

$??; 13% alcohol; screw cap; drunk 17-20 OCT 09; 94+++ points

Marie and James Linke tend this tiny patch of 80 year old vines on their windswept ridge above Gooseburg in the wild High Barossa. And tend IS the word. You wouldn't put a machine near this priceless vitcultural jewel of a garden. It seems almost oblivious to drought or the Devil, or whatever evils nature can throw at it: year-in, year-out, it oozes incredibly fine, tense, taught riesling. No irrigation. Hardly any grapes. Berries like lentils. And this is even more along those lines than usual.

It smells of the sandstone and schist of that hairy ridge, with the gentlest citrus blossom, the pith of limes and lemons, faint banana, dried apple, freshly bitten nashi pear, the tiniest slice of jackfruit ... I dunno. It confounds me. Then tip some of it into you, and all that promise seems suddenly compacted and refined, drawn out and tensioned, like a steel marine cable. Or maybe a really good German tape-wound jazz guitar string. There is no compromise. You might expect it to suddenly twang. But it doesn't. It just seems to wind tighter and tighter, and stretch longer, until eventually the furry tannins move up, kinda wrapping all that tension with velvet.

It's a beautiful austere cold Nico of a wine which shouldn't be served too chilly: this princess brings her own chill. And she'll keep bringing it for many many years. Like 25. Deutschland Uber Alles! Stunning.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The road-trip's over and the reviews continue.

I have just returned from my annual four day holiday to Melbourne for the Hawthorn Best and Fairest Dinner which is held at the Crown Casino on the weekend after the AFL Grand Final. I must admit it was extremely difficult to get there this year, more than usual, due to large sales volumes in the past weeks (more invoicing, posting, etc for me to process before I left) and the passing of a friend also put a dark cloud over the week and for a few days, time seemed to stand still.

Due to my hectic work schedule, and the additional need to have some time out (my own space and some time to reflect) I decided to drive to Victoria this time and along the way spent a few nights with some good friends in country Victoria. I also met some wonderful new friends; a lovely man by the name of Barry who was until recently, a farmer in Bendigo, and a beautiful lady who guided me out of Bendigo, literally. Many thanks to Wendy and her daughter who spent the best part of half an hour of their own time driving and chatting to me before I started heading toward Wycheproof. Wendy is currently doing a hospitality course in Bendigo so if there are any readers on here that are looking for a bubbly enthusiastic lady to employ please contact me to get her details.

The actual Melbourne part of my trip was a whirlwind and most exhausting but I did manage to catch up with some fellow Hawthorn friends and also squeeze a wine appointment in. Most promising indeed as it looks like our wine stocks in Melbourne will be increasing in the next few months which is great as most of our wines have ended up in New South Wales and Queensland lately.

The photo with this entry is of a sidewalk artist in Melbourne - the art aspect being one of the many reasons I love that city. It is such a wonderful time of year to visit Melbourne... For now though, it's back to the office to work through my mountain of bookwork. Just before I sign off for the day however, I would like to share with you yet another superb review of our riesling by Jeremy Pringle: http://winewilleatitself.blogspot.com/2009/10/2009-karra-yerta-riesling.html#comments

Karra Yerta Wines 2009 Eden Valley Riesling
Eden Valley 13.0% Screwcap CD $25
I'm beginning to think that writing up a note on a wine is more difficult if you've already read some good descriptions of it already. In this case, I've read three. It helps if the wine is awesome though. So here is my take-

The remarkable (lack of) colour is something to behold in person, even if you've been told to expect it. And I thought the 2008 was pristine...
Very tightly coiled, yet it's a complete joy to smell. Wild finger limes, chalk, Granny Smith apples and some spice are all beguiling. But it has a real X factor in its oil like characters, somehow present on both the nose and palate. It's a non-oily oil, if you will. Like those sunscreen lotions that finish dry. It lends a certain soft counter-point to the racy acidity of the wine.

The texture is quite sublime, with the liquid caressing the tongue gently on one hand but invigorating the whole mouth on the other. In fact the intense flavours and acidity presented themselves at the back and top of my mouth. It's hard to describe it really. Suffice to say I'd not experienced it before, but I wish to experience it many more times in the future. The crescendo on the back palate is tremendously enjoyable and somewhat breathtaking. I was left mouthing an inaudible "wow" as the finish lingered. And linger it did. Persistence personified. I'm not going into technical details or mentioning anything other than the wine here, because it was the stuff in the bottle that gave me such excitement. After a pretty ordinary week to be honest. This was, in its own way, every bit as good as any white wine I've tasted this year. And I've had some blinders. 130 cases only. Go. Buy.