It started in the vineyard: hand selected fruit from two of Swinney’s oldest blocks, with precise vineyard management employed to eliminate any excessive exposure to the sun. In the cellar, this wine was whole-bunch pressed, only lightly settled and fermented naturally on high solids in tank, where the temperature of the ferments can rise as high as 20 degrees. These techniques are still highly atypical in the world of Australian Riesling. This is the kind of practice that can only work with outstanding fruit, and here it works brilliantly—creating superb texture and discrete complexity. Following fermentation, the wine rested, unsulphured, on its lees for four months prior to bottling.
The result of all this is a dazzling riff on Frankland River Riesling; vibrant and intense yet also wonderfully textural and complex, with a glade of pure mandarin, lemon grass and white nectarine fruit, balanced by a mouth-watering, pithy and briny spine and a potent, driven finish.
“Lovely wine here. It has a blossom perfume over lime, green pear and green apple, texture is all soft chalkiness, acidity also firm but gentle in a way, maybe some fennel in there as well, and plenty of crunch and pear skin grip on a long finish. Unusually for Frankland River Riesling, really easy to enjoy as a young wine. Really like this. Almost feels Italianate and Soave-like, which is likely a weird thing to say, but there you have it.”
94 points, Gary Walsh, The Wine Front