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2019 Rippon Mature Vine Riesling

2019 Rippon Mature Vine Riesling

94+ RP


From the critics:

95 JS

93 VM

Featured Review
Lighter and livelier than the 2018 (a warmer vintage, which weighed in a full percent higher in finished alcohol by volume), Rippon's 2019 Mature Vine Riesling strikes a winning balance between fresh green apple, tangy citrus and spring-like florals. It's medium-bodied (12% alcohol) and almost dry, with great concentration and length. Classically built, it should age well for over a decade. Robert Parker Wine Advocate

Robert Parker | 94+ RP

Critic Reviews

Bracing minerals, sliced pears and apples, wet stones and a gently floral edge here. So pure and fresh. The palate has a succulent, powerfully aligned drive of fresh apple and pear flavors with a mouthwateringly fresh stream of acidity. More citrusy at the finish. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.

James Suckling | 95 JS
Lighter and livelier than the 2018 (a warmer vintage, which weighed in a full percent higher in finished alcohol by volume), Rippon’s 2019 Mature Vine Riesling strikes a winning balance between fresh green apple, tangy citrus and spring-like florals. It’s medium-bodied (12% alcohol) and almost dry, with great concentration and length. Classically built, it should age well for over a decade.

Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94+ RP
Like many wines made by Nick Mills at Rippon, this needs to time to reveal its true character. This is an attractive Riesling with silken texture, but it is a quiet wine that requires exploration. Expect subtle yet stimulating floral aromas, and apple and lemon peel allied with brioche-like notes from time on lees playing a supporting role. New Zealand Riesling can be austere due to its acidity, but Mills has found a happy medium between acidity and sweetness, leaving a dry, clean, balanced finish.

Vinous Media | 93 VM

Wine Details for 2019 Rippon Mature Vine Riesling

Type of Wine New Zealand White : Great wines don't only come from Europe. New Zealand has some splendid white wines to offer to the world, based on different grape varietals. Sauvignon Blanc is undoubtedly one of the most commonly planted variety, but you can also stumble upon some sweet Pinot Gris, acidic Chardonnay, and even German Riesling, with its wide range of fruity flavors.
Varietal Riesling : It has been 587 years since the official “birth” of Riesling, the Noble grape variety of Germany. In that time, this white grape has seen exponential growth and popularity worldwide. Riesling has traveled beyond the Rhine River, where it is thought to have originated, spreading throughout Germany, Austria and Alsace, Australia, New Zealand and California. New World adaptations may have helped bring the varietal into the global spotlight, but its ancestral home and greatest reflection of terroir remains in Germany.

As aforementioned, the first recorded mention of the varietal appeared in the 1435 sale of several Riesling vines to German Count, John IV of Katzenelnbogen. Prior this transaction, the history of Riesling remains unclear, other than it first inhabiting the Rhine River region, which runs throughout parts of Germany, France, Austria and Switzerland. In 1998, scientists in Austria, using DNA technology, were able to determine that Riesling is the progeny of Heunisch Weiss, otherwise known as Gouais Blanc. Said to be a commoner among superior grape varietals, Gouais Blanc is ancient, originated in Germany and has sired some of the greatest varietals in the world, including Chardonnay, Semillon, Gamay noir, Melon and Aligote.

The small, round white-green berries of Riesling turn a pretty gold color, often with lenticels (pore-like structures, resembling freckles) when ripe. Vines can vary significantly from weak to moderately vigorous depending on the climatic region, soil characteristics and moisture availability. They are adaptable to a wide range of soil types making it quite dynamic and versatile.

One of Riesling’s most unique and celebrated qualities is its vibrant expression of terroir. This “sense of place” enables the particular elements of the soil and microclimate to be uniquely expressed through the wine itself, allowing this globetrotting varietal to flourish in similar winegrowing conditions around the world. Riesling has found success and popularity in California and the Finger Lakes of New York, Australia, New Zealand, France, Hungary and South Africa. However, it reaches its true zenith in the Rhine River Valley.

Mosel, Pfalz and Rheingau are the key winegrowing locations in Germany, where the climates are cool with low average temperatures and with the bulk of rainfall occurring during the summer. The vines of Riesling thrive here, in heat-retaining, stony soils on steep, south-facing slopes along the river valleys where they find optimal sunlight and natural growing conditions. Austria and Alsace (France) share similar climatic influences and terroir due to the proximity of the Rhine River. Their winegrowing industries have been greatly impacted by the Riesling grape varietal.

The commonly misunderstood Riesling grape varietal produces wines that are quite austere when young, making many wine drinkers wary of them. A fine Riesling almost demands time in the bottle. In good vintages, Riesling can last several decades and rival the finest whites in the world. At a glimpse Riesling may seem simple, but is actually rather complex. Riesling can be harvested early or late, vinified in many ways and can range from dry to very sweet. The five types of Riesling are Kabinett (bone dry to off-dry) Spatlese (sweet) Auslese (sweeter) Beerenauslese (very sweet) Trockenbeerenauslese (sweetest). Thanks to its naturally high acidity, it is a supremely agreeable drinker that will please just about any palate. From tingly-dry, steely-lemon to refreshingly green apple, peach, pear and grapefruit to honeyed and luscious apricot; the myriad of flavor profiles of Riesling is impressive.

The Noble Riesling grape may be complex, might be misunderstood and may be more obscure than other white varietals, but is one that produces some of the most fascinating, multifaceted and unique wines in the world.

Country New Zealand : Thirteen hundred miles off the coast of Australia is the small island nation of New Zealand. The latter is often spoken of in conjunction with the former, but is very much deserving of its own story. Known far and wide for its aromatic and unique style of Sauvignon Blanc, the small wine producing nation is proving convincingly that it deserves a place among the top producers in the world. New Zealand has successfully developed a wide range of wine styles and is garnering global recognition for its viticultural prowess.

Vines have been cultivated in New Zealand since 1819; planted by none other than the father of antipodean (term used to describe a person from New Zealand and Australia) viticulture, James Busby. He was the country’s first true wine pioneer and helped pave the way towards creating a prosperous New Zealand wine industry. By the late 19th Century, Dalmatian settlers were cultivating vines throughout Auckland and Northland, providing the foundations for modern New Zealand viticulture. Sauvignon Blanc took leaps and bounds in the 1980s and 1990s producing a style of wine that was praised for its forward and herbaceous flavor and propelling the New Zealand wine industry to heights it had never before witnessed.

New Zealand’s key grape and driving force of its wine industry is without a doubt, Sauvignon Blanc. Of the 41,603 hectares under vine, Sauvignon Blanc is planted to 26,559, which corresponds to 64 percent of all vineyard space. Aside from the country’s mainstay, the aromatic whites of Riesling, Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer have all made good impressions on enthusiasts and wine professionals alike. It is not uncommon to see the regions of Hawke’s Bay, Martinborough and Central Otago gracing the label as they have become synonymous with the country’s well-received offerings. Marlborough is, however, the most productive wine growing region (29,415 hectares) and where Sauvignon Blanc thrives in its host’s hospitable climate and terroir.

Most winegrowing regions in New Zealand have a maritime climate and due to the geography of the land and its proximity to the coast (75 miles) the oceanic influence is ever present. The country lies on the boundary between the Pacific Ocean and the Indo-Australian tectonic plate contributing to the volcanic soils that are found in many wine regions, particularly in the North Island. Conversely, the landscape and geography of the south is greatly attributed to glacial movements. Geywake (a variety of sandstone) and schist are also contributing elements to the wide array of terroirs in New Zealand vineyards and form much of the soil present it the country’s rolling hills, mountainsides and many river terraces. Interestingly, there are very few wine regions on New Zealand’s west coast due to the strong westerly winds from the Tasman Sea. The Kaikoura and Southern Alps mountain ranges offer shelter from these harsh conditions and greatly improve growing conditions in the major wine regions.

While the aromatic white varieties have found a niche in the cooler parts of the South Island, Syrah and Bordeaux Blends (Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet France) have taken to the warmer climes in Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne (Chardonnay from these areas have also become quite popular). The small, but intriguing portfolio of red wines produced would not be complete without the mention of New Zealand’s rising star, Pinot Noir; which has made a home for itself in the many popular wine regions, including Marlborough and Central Otago.

New Zealand may be a small wine producing country with an annual output of only 324 million liters, but it is one that offers a wide range of New World wine styles that have taken the world by storm, proving its own identity and a major player in today’s market.

Region Wanaka
Subregion Wanaka


Producer Rippon

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