Riesling, Merlot

Riesling is a white grape that is famous for its intense aromatics and crisp acidity. Riesling was the most planted white grape in Australia until the early 1990s when Chardonnay took over. Riesling flourishes in the Clare Valley, particularly Watervale, around the Polish Hill River, and in the cooler Eden Valley. Riesling is also being grown with increasing popularity in the Western Australia regions Albany, Frankland River and Porongorup. Australian Rieslings are noted for their citrus/lime fruit flavours in their youth and a smooth balance of freshness, lanolin and acid as they age. Australian botrytized Rieslings have immense levels of flavour concentration with beautiful acid and structure.

Riesling was first planted in New Zealand in the 1970s and has flourished in the relatively cool climates of the Marlborough, Central Otago area and for late harvests in the Nelson region.

Alsace is famous for producing outstanding Riesling from dry austere to Vendages Tardives and Sélection de Grains Nobles. They tend to be fuller, more savoury and viscous wines than those of other countries.

In Germany, Riesling constitutes around 20% of total plantings. The best examples are planted on south-facing slate-rich slopes. Germany produces many different styles from dry perfumed wines with racy, mineral acidity to exotically lush flavours of their great late harvest wines.
Merlot in Australia is not a variety you will often see unblended, until recently. It is most often used to add suppleness and mid-palate to Cabernet’s stern, serious structure. In Australia, Merlot is now achieving considerable recognition as a varietal wine. Merlot blended wines are available from the warmer inland regions, such as Riverina, Riverland and Murray Darling. Single varietal Merlot from the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale produces a softer dry plummy wine. Whereas the cooler climates such as the Yarra Valley and Margaret River tends to take on more savoury characters with firmer tannins.

It is the most widely planted grape in Bordeaux, France where planting has rapidly expanded throughout the world in the last decade. Merlot is adaptable to most soils, is relatively simple to cultivate and is a naturally high yielding. In St Emilion and Pomerol, it withstands the moist clay-rich soils far better than Cabernet, producing opulently rich, plummy wines. Le Pin, Pétrus and Clinet are examples of some of the best (and most expensive) Merlot based wines.

Merlot is now grown in virtually all wine growing countries and is particularly successful in New Zealand, California, Chile and Northern Italy. New Zealand's Hawkes Bay is producing outstanding Merlot-based blends, especially from the Gimblett Gravels.
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  1. ZILZIE 'SELECTION 23' MERLOT 2019
    As with all Zilzie wines, this represents outstanding value and superb quality for the price. Perfect every day wine from one of the oldest wine producing families in Australia. ... Learn More
  2. ZILZIE 'SELECTION 23' MERLOT 2018
    As with all Zilzie wines, this represents outstanding value and superb quality for the price. Perfect every day wine from one of the oldest wine producing families in Australia. ... Learn More
  3. NORFOLK RISE MERLOT 2016
    Lifted red berries, mint, stone fruits and sweet cherries. The palate features plum, spice and forest fruit flavours balanced by chocolate and vanilla oak notes, finishing with good length and soft fine tannins. Outstanding value! "This shows a lot of “ ... Learn More
    pts
    Campbell Mattinson
    Out of stock
  4. GIESEN MERLOT 2018
    Giesen's Estate Merlot is a wine that's very approachable in youth and suitable for any occasion. The fruit is sourced from a premium Gisborne vineyard, producing a Merlot with good fruit intensity and a touch of complexity through restrained use ... Learn More
    GIESEN MERLOT 2018
    $13.99 Per item
  5. ROAD TO ENLIGHTENMENT RIESLING 2019
    Road to Enlightenment Riesling is regional and varietally expressive - full of character and exceptionally drinkable. Sourced from a combination of older and younger vines in the heart of the Clare Valley, just off the Horrocks Highway to the north ... Learn More
  6. THORN CLARKE 'SANDPIPER' MERLOT 2017
    12 months in tight grain French and American oak. The nose has primarily lifted strawberry and plum fruit characters. Medium bodied with an abundance of the primary characters carried through from the nose of plum and strawberry there is also a ... Learn More
  7. THORN CLARKE 'SANDPIPER' RIESLING 2019
    The 2019 vintage was named in James Hallidays Top 100 wines October 2019. This wine is offering great vibrancy and freshness now, but will also develop beautifully with age. Bright ripe lemon fruit characters dominate the palate and crisp minerally acid forms the ... Learn More
    pts
    James Halliday
    Out of stock
  8. FRANKLAND ESTATE 'ROCKY GULLY' RIESLING 2019
    Made to enjoy in its youth the Rocky Gully Riesling displays generosity of flavour and delicacy making it an ideal accompaniment with a wide range of foods and occasions. Fresh pear and citrus blossom aromas, as well as bath salt ... Learn More
  9. WOODS CRAMPTON WHITE LABEL RIESLING 2018
    Sourced from three higher altitude and well established Eden Valley vineyards just below 600 metres. The nose is very fresh and restrained, tending towards citrus with subtle floral notes. The palate is elegant and pure with a core of delicate citrus ... Learn More
  10. NICK O'LEARY RIESLING 2018
    Aromatics of white flowers, apple blossom and citrus. The palate is generous with a powerful mix of Granny Smith apple and freshly squeezed lime. The mouth-watering natural acidity leads to a pristine palate of balance and length. ... Learn More
    pts
    James Halliday's Wine Companion
    Out of stock
  11. PIKES 'TRADITIONALE' RIESLING 2018
    With a history dating back to 1878, the Pike family has a past rich in brewing and winemaking. Current custodians, Neil & Andrew form a formidable partnership creating wines that express terroir magnificently. One of their icon wines, the 'Traditionale' Riesling manages ... Learn More
    pts
    Gary Walsh
    pts
    James Halliday's Wine Companion
    pts
    Huon Hooke
    pts
    Tyson Stelzer
  12. UNITED CELLARS SELECTION 'RIESLING BY TOM BARRY' 2017
    WINNER; James Halliday's Wine Companion 2020 WINERY OF THE YEAR! Sourced from both the prestigious Watervale sub region and the Barry’s own 40 yr old Lodge Hill vineyard in the Clare Valley. The palate shows lime citrus peel and ginger. There ... Learn More
  13. PHILIP SHAW 'THE CONDUCTOR' MERLOT 2016
    The high altitude, age and aspect of Orange and in particular the Koomooloo vineyard has ideal conditions for producing a Pinot Noir of great complexity. The Conductor wears a medium colour with a bright red hue and smells of rich ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  14. JIM BARRY WATERVALE RIESLING 2017
    WINNER; James Halliday's Wine Companion 2020 WINERY OF THE YEAR! The Watervale Riesling is picked from a special part of the Florita vineyard in Watervale. This famous Riesling vineyard usually achieves full ripeness, with high natural acid levels. The nose displays ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  15. GUNDERLOCH 'FRITZ' RIESLING 2017
    Citrus, floral, honey and white peach aromas, with some minerality notes. Fresh, creamy, juicy, round palate with some sweetness but balanced acidity. Off-dry in character with a cleansing acidity and plenty of citrus and stone fruit make this a perfect ... Learn More
  16. PETALUMA HANLIN HILL RIESLING 2017
    Sourced from the home of great Australian Riesling, this trademark Clare Valley aromatic white is wonderful when opened upon release and like all great Rieslings, will develop brilliant toasty characters over a 10 year period in the bottle. Pale straw in ... Learn More
    pts
    Huon Hooke
    Out of stock
  17. EDEN ROAD CANBERRA RIESLING 2018
    "Riesling is one of the Canberra District icons. We believe Canberra does and will continue to produce some of the best examples of Riesling in Australia. Its continental climate is perfectly suited to growing lively and beautifully poised Riesling." Intense ... Learn More
  18. FRANKLAND ESTATE RIESLING 2018
    With aromas of white citrus flower and blossom this wine starts with alluring appeal. The soft and approachable start builds with a combination of lime, bath salts and mandarin pith. The richness of fruit is highlighted by the texture, spice ... Learn More
  19. DR LOOSEN DR L RIESLING DRY 2016
    An entry level Riesling at a fantastic price. "We call them our 'welcome to the Mosel' wines." Dr. Loosen. Racy, elegant, bright and vibrant - perfect for a summers afternoon. The fragrant nose of honey, apricot and stone fruit carries ... Learn More
  20. ERIN EYES 'PRIDE OF ERIN RESERVE' RIESLING 2019
    Voted #1 Riesling by Huon Hooke Pride of the Erin is Steve Wiblin's top Riesling, and in 2019, a challenging and intensely low-yielding vintage, he has ransacked every iota of available flavour he could possibly muster. Sourced from Sevenhill, this behemoth is ... Learn More
    pts
    Huon Hooke
    pts
    Campbell Mattinson
    Out of stock
  21. RAVENSWORTH RIESLING 2019
    Sourced from three vineyards in the Murrumbateman. Citrus again, white peach, grapefruit with hints of anise spice and flowers, more generous than the last few years but still the thrilling acidity and green apple crunch. ... Learn More
  22. JL WOLF 'WACHENHEIMER' RIESLING 2017
    Made by the famous and energetic Ernie Loosen (of Dr Loosen fame), voted one of the World's 50 Most Influential Winemakers in Wine & Spirits Magazine. The fruit for the Wachenheimer Riesling comes from a single-vineyard site , called Königswingert (“King’s ... Learn More
  23. WOODS CRAMPTON 'BLACK LABEL' RIESLING 2018
    100% hand picked, 100% whole bunch pressed - just the freerun juice is used. On yeast lees for 4 months before bottling. The nose is pure and fresh. It is dominated by citrus aromas along with hints of green apple and floral blossom. ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  24. JIM BARRY 'SINGLE VINEYARD' RIESLING 2017
    A generous opulent style Riesling with an aromatic drive of pink grapefruit, florals, green apple and a lift of tropical guava. Generous flavours of citrus and tropical fruit to open, tied together by a loosely woven framework of zippy acid. ... Learn More
  25. WEINGUT LEITZ 'EINZ ZWEI DRY' RHEINGAU RIESLING 2017
    This is everything that is great about German Riesling; elegance, subtle beauty and finesse. Complex yet still so drinkable. ... Learn More
    pts
    Sunday Times UK
    Out of stock
  26. PEREGRINE ORGANIC DRY RIESLING 2018
    "A fresh bright Riesling with a beautiful balance of delicate minerality and fresh acidity. Aromatics of lime, lemongrass and citrus blossom combine with green apple and lemon peel flavours on the palate" Organically certified and hand harvested from Central Otago. ... Learn More
  27. CLONAKILLA RIESLING 2018
    "Murrumbateman’s cool, continental climate and decomposed granite soils are perfectly suited to Riesling. We had some challenging moments leading up to the 2018 vintage. A hail storm on January 9th reduced the size of the crop, but the fruit that ... Learn More
    pts
    Mike Bennie
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    Huon Hooke
  28. TIM ADAMS RESERVE RIESLING 2011
    Riesling wines from the Clare Valley are definitely enjoyable when both young and zesty, however when left to mature beyond five years of age, they truly show their worth. "Talk about drinking at its peak. This is in a great ... Learn More
    pts
    Campbell Mattinson
    pts
    Tyson Stelzer
    Out of stock
  29. STEFANO LUBIANA RIESLING 2018
    100% estate-grown, single-vineyard, certified biodynamic Riesling from soils that are predominantly silty grey gravelly loam over sandstone with some clay loam patches. The fruit is hand picked, then fruit is sorted by hand on a vibrating table. Tasmania’s ultra cool ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  30. ASHTON HILLS ESTATE RIESLING 2019
    Ashton Hills is a three hectare, dry-grown vineyard that lies in the Piccadilly Valley sub region of the Adelaide Hills on a ridge just below the summit of Mount Lofty. The estate was founded by Stephen George in 1982 and since ... Learn More
  31. MAHANA RIESLING 2015
    The 2015 Mahana Riesling was harvested from the certified organic Burkes Bank vineyard. A powerful and rustic expression of Riesling. Aromas of stone fruits and citrus with ripe nectarine and peach skin. The nose follows onto the palate. Flavours of peach, ... Learn More
    MAHANA RIESLING 2015
    $33.99 Per item
    pts
    Mike Bennie
  32. PLANTAGENET 'MUSEUM RELEASE' RIESLING 2013
    96 POINTS, JAMES HALLIDAY'S WINE COMPANION Great Southern Riesling deserves more attention in the world of wine, particularly at this price. Beautifully balanced, fresh lime juice and lemon blossom flavours fill its zesty, concentrated palate, with minerally acidity streaming long into ... Learn More
    pts
    James Halliday
    Out of stock
  33. KATNOOK ESTATE MERLOT 2016
    Lavishly flavoured yet supple, this powerhouse rendition should appeal to many a Merlot devotee. A complex array of ripe fruit and oak on the nose. Plum, coffee and cedar combined with subtle notes of dark chocolate and cedar. Complex layers ... Learn More
    pts
    Ray Jordan
    Out of stock
  34. GROSSET 'ALEA' RIESLING 2018
    With its first vintage in 2012, ‘Alea’ is the most recent addition to the Grosset stable. Made in the style of the Rieslings of Germany and Austria, it has attractive lemon blossom on a first swirl, there’s a hint of ... Learn More
    pts
    Campbell Mattinson
    Out of stock
  35. DR LOOSEN BERNKASTELER LAY KABINETT 2016
    Kabinett is the lightest, most delicate style of Riesling in Germany, produced from the earliest harvested grapes in the best vineyard sites. Fresh citrus and green apple aromas with some mineral notes. Delicious lime juice flavours and gentle acidity with ... Learn More
    pts
    Mosel Fine Wines
  36. WITTMANN ESTATE RIESLING 2018
    The 2018 Riesling trocken is sourced 100% from the calcareous sites in Westhofen. ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  37. WITTMANN ESTATE RIESLING 2017
    The 2017 Riesling trocken is sourced 100% from the calcareous sites in Westhofen. ... Learn More
    Out of stock
  38. FRANKLAND ESTATE 'ISOLATION RIDGE' RIESLING 2016
    Complex and perfumed on the nose it has alluring citrus pith, zesty orange, lime and cumquat. Delicate flavours of spice and ironstone mineral undertones. There is a real softness and generosity of fruit on the front and mid palate. The ... Learn More
    pts
    Campbell Mattinson
    pts
    James Halliday
  39. A. CHRISTMANN 'PFALZ' RIESLING 2018
    The Pfalz Riesling is produced from the grapes of first pickings in our classified sites. These are always picked on the perfect degree of ripeness limiting the amount of fruit acid to a moderate level. The wine unites the minerality, ... Learn More
  40. FRANKLAND ESTATE 'ISOLATION RIDGE' RIESLING 2018
    Framed organically (certified) contributing to this consistently being ranked among the best in Australia. The wine leaps out of the glass with perfumed white citrus florals, spice and grapefruit. A real generosity and poise on the palate. Ripe juicy limes ... Learn More
    pts
    James Suckling
    pts
    Huon Hooke
    pts
    James Halliday's Wine Companion
    pts
    Gary Walsh
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