We sourced the fruit for our 2018 Reserve Riesling from our steepest, hillside rows. These were the first vines we pruned and the last grapes we picked, harvested on the fifteenth of October after a dramatic frost event. This sweet, unctuous wine was bright orange when we first pressed it, and while the color has shifted, the concentrated aromas of mango, apricot, and chamomile have remained unchanged.
The intense flavors and aromas of ripe apricot, mango, and orchard flowers are persistent now, but this wine has a long life ahead of it and will mature for many years. This is not a “dessert” style of wine, but it is sweet, complex, and decidedly delicious. Savor this amazing treat with robust bleu cheeses, cured meats, apple or peach tarts, roasted nuts, and pumpkin pie.
The 2018 Reserve Riesling received a 94-point score at the 2020 American Fine Wine Competition and was one of only four Rieslings in the country to receive a rating of 94 points and a double gold medal.
- Variety - 100% Riesling
- Clone - 9
- AVA - West Elks AVA
- Vineyard - Redstone Vineyard, Sori Biscotto Block
- Harvest Date - October 15, 2018
- Fermentation - temperature-controlled stainless steel
- Aging - stainless steel
- pH - 3.28
- TA - 5.9 g/L
- RS - 43 g/L
- Alcohol - 12.5%
- Production - 160 cases
Behind the Bottle
For a cultural palate that so often centers around the joys of all things sweet, many American wine drinkers consider themselves " too sophisticated" for sweet wines. We have finally realized that sparkling wine is not just for New Years, and that rosé is a serious wine category unto itself, but the hurdles for serious, intentionally made, sweet wines remain.
Capturing and preserving delicious, natural sweetness in wine is very difficult. There are many inferior methods, and then there's the problem of too much sulfur. Our Reserve Riesling was made with as few additions as possible, in order to showcase the dramatic nature of the base product – amazing grapes.
Right out of the press, the free-run juice from the last harvest of 2018 was as brightly colored as tangerine or mango juice, and the similarities didn't end at the color. The classic Riesling flavors of apricot, peach, and flowers were mingled with flavors of mango and tangerine, with a unique grassy note that was reminiscent of chamomile and exotic spices. Amazingly, many of these flavors and aromas are still the dominating the palate, but the first hints of secondary aromas are starting to come through and are hinting at delicious notes of hazelnuts and petrol.
We debuted this wine to the public at our very first wine dinner here in the vineyard, hosted in June of 2018 in conjunction with the North Fork Uncorked weekend here in the West Elks AVA. We hadn't even bottled the wine yet and pulled samples right from the tank's tasting valve for the event. We knew what we were looking for as far as pairing, and we had a local chef create individual apple tarts with bleu cheese crumbled on top as the dessert course, and it was amazing. Something about enjoying that pairing while sitting in the vineyard in the setting sunlight was magical, you can just imagine it.
Since then we have served the wine at wine dinners and events across the state and it is featured in some amazing restaurants. The best part is that we're in no hurry to sell out of this unique wine, as it is only getting better and more complex as it ages, and there's no end in sight for this wine. We can't wait to try it in five, ten, or even fifteen years.