Monday, 28 January 2013

Cloudy Bay Riesling 2007

Riesling. I'm not really a fan if I'm honest. I tend to find the petrol/oil smells overpowering and the fruit a touch too sickly, but I'm never one to write off a grape just because I don't tend to like it. Everything has its time and place, it's just that I can't seem to find the time to place Riesling...

I tasted Cloudy Bay's 2007 Riesling out of an enomatic machine at Majestic and thought that it was rather good, so on a whim I bought a few different bottles and decided to give them a go. Whilst 2 of the bottles confirmed my opinions by ticking the 'over sweet' box a touch too often, Cloudy Bay (and another Kiwi wine, Main Divide) was remarkably tasty, although at a price of £20-25 a bottle, one might expect it to beat the socks of the £9 standard Rieslings...

Nose: Rubber tyres, with an almost peaty undertone that really assaults the nostrils. Oily and nose-coating with a somewhat unappealing hint of what I could only describe as 'sweat'. A touch of dried apricot underneath. Not exactly appealing, but I suppose that's Riesling for you.

Palate: Light, sweet and peachy. Very nice indeed. Honey, canteloupe melon, lemon and something that tasted a bit like lavender. Certainly sugary, but not overpoweringly so. It's rather nicely balanced, too. It began to lose the over-sweetness in time and evolved into a more rounded taste, with a good balance of savoury and sweet. Hints of citrus come through with more tropical fruit.

Body: Smooth and pleasantly mouth-filling.

Finish: Short, dissipating quickly and leaving little or not aftertaste. No development noted.

Conclusion: Perhaps I do have time for Riesling after all? This was quite a pleasant experience, especially after tasting 2 other cloying sugar bombs. The fact that it lost its oversweet edge over time was a huge bonus and meant that I was able to drink more than 1 glass of it. It improved greatly over time in the glass, but the nose remained a negative for me, although it is by no means any different from most Riesling noses, so don't let that put you off it you're a Riesling fan.

Points: Hm. As it got me over my intrinsic dislike for Riesling I'm encouraged to give it extra points, but then that will inflate it above wines that I regard as better. As a result, 86-88 seems to be a fair range. Not bad at all.

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