Prophet'S Rock Dry Riesling 2019
It gets the same meticulous treatment in the vineyard as our top Pinot Noir, and our yields are extremely low, creating a concentrated expression of our unique site. Averaging only 300 cases per vintage, our Dry Riesling is a rare find. The vinification is heavily influenced by Paul’s time in Alsace, where use of wild yeast, multiple small vessels and long ageing are the norm.
After lengthy slow ferments, the various components are aged on their yeast lees before bottling. The wine is cellared for at least two years before release. This wine has been extremely well-reviewed since the first release in 2006.
This wine will reward collectors over the next 7+ years from vintage.
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The New Zealand wine industry is one of the younger wine regions in the world, whose popularity grew immensely when Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc hit the world wine scene, quite unique in style when compared to the typical French Sancerre.
Wine is successfully cultivated on both the North and South islands from a latitude of 36 degrees in the North to 45 degrees for the most southerly wine region in the world, the South Island's Central Otago. The majority of regions are located in free-draining alluvial valleys except for Waiheke Island and Kawarau Gorge in Central Otago and benefit from the moderating effect of the maritime climate as no vineyard is more than 80 miles from the ocean. With plentiful sunshine hours and cool evening sea breezes, the grapes thrive.
Sauvignon Blanc is the major white variety people will think of when you mention New Zealand Whites, however fantastic Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and less commonly Viognier, Chenin Blanc and Pinot Blanc. Pinot Noir is the most widely planted red variety in New Zealand although Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot (Bordeaux Blends), Syrah are also grown and in even smaller amounts, Tempranillo and Montepulcianos can too be found. Sparkling wines of very high standards are also made in New Zealand.
The key wine regions in New Zealand include Auckland, Canterbury, Central Otago, Gisborne, Hawke's Bay, Marlborough and Nelson.
Central Otago is the southernmost wine-growing region in the world, located at a latitude of 45 degrees south, on New Zealand’s south island. A spectacular landscape makes the region one of the most scenic wine regions if not in the world then certainly in New Zealand. Central to the region is the tourist destination of Queenstown, which is a great base to make wine trips from. Heavy mineral deposits in silt loams are typical for the soils in Central Otago, but are unlike any other region in New Zealand. The Otago region is the country's only ‘continental ’ wine-growing region. Pinot Noir is the flagship red varietal, which is very well suited to the region's large diurnal shifts (a large diurnal shift means a big difference between low and high temperatures) and also the region's long, cool and dry autumn. The Pinot Noirs coming out of the Otago region are most often fragrant, lush Pinot Noirs with silky textures and true fruit intensity. Aromatic whites also thrive, in particular Riesling where anything from bone-dry to very sweet can be made. Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris and lesser amounts of Chardonnay is also made to a very high quality. Central Otago is in Jancis Robinson’s top five New World wine-producing regions.
Bendigo is a subzone in the eastern portion of the Central Otago wine region on New Zealand’s South Island, about 55 kilometres from the tourist adventure hub of Queenstown. Bendigo’s focus is primarily Pinot Noir, as its dry, stony, mineral-rich soils and semi-arid climate – with hot sunny days, cool nights, and long, dry autumns – are well-suited for growing and ripening this grape. Bendigo Pinot Noirs have a reputation as powerful expressions of this wine, boasting strong tannins and rich, concentrated flavours. In addition to Pinot Noir, the subzone also grows Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay. As the area is hot enough to ripen Syrah, some producers are also beginning to experiment with growing this grape.
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About the brand Prophets Rock
Two vineyards were established in the Bendigo sub-region: The Prophet’s Rock Home Vineyard and, subsequently, the Rocky Point. Both are steep and elevated, and each is distinctive – The Home Vineyard with its rare mix of soils, including schist, clay and chalk, and Rocky Point with its stony ground and almost treacherous slopes.
Step into the winery though and it's almost like stepping into one of the old houses of Europe. Winemaker Paul Pujol refined his trade working in France’s classical wine regions, the Languedoc, Sancerre and, crucially, Burgundy and Alsace. His traditional aesthetic — respectful, patient, vineyard-focused – resonates in the Prophet’s Rock wines, and frees them to express the uniqueness of the individual terroirs.
The Prophet’s Rock philosophy centres around combining both the old world and the new; “past and present unified by place”. Prophet’s Rock are also committed to sustainable wine production with the vines sitting comfortably in the natural environment that surrounds them. Prophet’s Rock is also a member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand.
With the vineyard producing low yield yet highly concentrated flavourful fruit, their efforts truly shine in the vineyard with harvesting undertaken completely by hand.
Their Pinot Gris and Riesling are slowly and gently whole-bunch pressed, followed by long slow ferments in barrel and aging on yeast lees prior to bottling before the next harvest. The Pinot Noir requires minimal extraction due to the extraordinary concentration of the fruit, and is fermented using only indigenous yeast from the vineyard. In barrel, the wines go through spontaneous malolactic fermentation and extended élevage. In the case of Prophet’s Rock, our Pinot Noir is bottled unfiltered and cellared before release.
"When we founded Prophet’s Rock in 1999, our goal was to find sites in Central Otago like no others. Two vineyards were established in the Bendigo sub-region: The Prophet’s Rock Home Vineyard and, subsequently, the Rocky Point. Both are steep and elevated, and each is distinctive – The Home Vineyard with its rare mix of soils, including schist, clay and chalk, and Rocky Point with its stony ground and almost treacherous slopes.
In the winery, though, we find our muses in the old houses of Europe. Winemaker Paul Pujol refined his trade working in France’s classical wine regions, the Languedoc, Sancerre and, crucially, Burgundy and Alsace. His traditional aesthetic — respectful, patient, vineyard-focused – resonates in our wines, and frees them to express the unique tenor of our sites." - Prophet's Rock