Eden Valley Rieslings often showcase delicacy and refinement. Rieslingfreak No.44 typically demonstrates this, with an aroma of citrus, talcum powder and white blossom, and flavors of lime and lemon, with a sweet spice background. The wine drinks well young but will reward with cellaring. This Riesling highlights the unique character of Eden Valley in a beautifully composed symphony of aromas and flavours. A sweetly perfumed bouquet of white flowers and sweet spice dance above ripe citrus notes of fresh lime and lemon zest. The palate is bright yet richly flavoured with the iconic slate-like minerality synonymous with Eden Valley, providing ballast for the lifted citrus and sweet spice notes that run the length of the palate through to the crisp, lingering finish. A wine for immediate enjoyment and complementary to a range of cuisines.
93 points Wine Advocate
John Hughes is the hero of high-quality, value-for-money Riesling in Australia. We love him for it. The wines start at around $27 AUD and soar to over $100 AUD, but every cuvée is worth every penny. The 2021 No. 44 is from the Eden Valley and boasts the mineral acid line and taut, austere line that the region does so well. At an elevation of over 440 meters, and the ground littered with skeletal, podzolic soils, the Eden is an ideal place for Riesling, as we see here. Pithy acidity (enhanced, I am sure, by the early pick and resultant 11.5% alcohol) is couched within a field of spring flowers, crushed rocks and citrus zest. Super good. 2022-2032
93 points Vinous
Pale, green-tinged straw. An incisive, mineral-driven bouquet evokes fresh citrus and orchard fruits, jasmine, kerosene and galangal. Taut and linear on the palate, offering intense lime pith, pear skin and bitter quinine flavors that slowly flesh out through the back half. Finishes with strong, stony persistence, the floral and citrus fruit notes repeating.
92 points James Suckling
This hinges to lemon citrus and has an elegant nose with almost essence-like intensity. The palate has a smooth, fleshy and softly round feel. Elegantly fleshy and plenty of fine acidity below the fruit here. Drink over the next three years. Screw cap.
90 points Decanter
The 2021 vintage was aseason of extremes. Spring gave us above average rainfall and was warm, while summer was cool and temperate. This combination was perfect for creating thriving grapevine canopies in the spring, and slow ripening of the grapes over summer. This combination encouraged full flavour development at lower levels of sugar accumulation, while maintaining higher acid levels in the fruit. Grapes were machine harvested at night and fruit was in the winery by morning – the preferred method for Riesling. Instead of pressing his Riesling, John uses a spin and drain method, where they spin the press every 10 minutes, to extract the free run juice – this ensures that the berries are treated very softly, whilst maintaining the purity of the juice. The juice then settled for about 5 days. Once the juice was clear, and solids were settled at the bottom of the tank, the wine was racked and the juice was ready for fermentation. The wine was then fermented at around 55 degrees for 10-12 days, until it reached his desired sugar level, at which point the wine was chilled and sulfured, to stop the ferment. The Riesling was then hot and cold stabilized, to remove all haze and crystals, before being filtered and bottled. Time lapse from harvest to bottling is roughly 3 months. Wine was released soon thereafter, in June. This is a limited production of only 224 dozen.
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