Frisk Prickly Riesling 2013
Made by a team of maverick winemakers hailing from the far corners of Victoria’s cool-climate regions, Frisk is crafted by seasoned hands. Harvested in the chilly eve and delivered to the winery in pristine condition, prized free-run Riesling juice is fermented with canny yeasts that ensure the wine is sporting plenty of aromatic verve along with a low 8% alcohol. And the prickle? A gentle spritz produced by those clever yeasts, captured to deliver a tickle that will rouse your palate. It’s downright Frisky.
Nestled into the Northern foothills of the Victorian Alps, the Alpine Valleys harbor a handful of dogged grape growers whose ancestors arrived in the 1850s after a less-than-comfortable boat trip from Italy. With lofty slopes climbing to 2000 feet, vineyards are snow clad in winter and punch through clouds to nab a slice of sunshine during summer. Four valleys are created by the Ovens, Buffalo, Buckland and Kiewa rivers, whose ancient flows dumped granite-based loam that the vines greedily nosh to produce flinty, minerally wines.
A large, climatically diverse country with incredibly diverse terrain, producing just about every wine style imaginable, Australia has a grand winemaking history and some of the oldest vines on the planet. Most regions are concentrated in the south of the country with those inland experiencing warm, dry conditions and those in coastal areas receiving tropical, maritime or Mediterranean weather patterns. Australia has for several decades been at the forefront of winemaking technology and has widely adopted the use of screwcaps, even for some premium and ultra-premium bottles. Thanks to the country’s relatively agreeable climate throughout and the openness of its people, experimentation is common and ongoing.
Shiraz is indeed Australia’s most celebrated and widely planted variety; Barossa Valley leads the way, producing exceptionally bold and supple versions. Cabernet Sauvignon, Australia's second most planted variety, can be blended with Shiraz but also shines on its own particularly in Coonawarra and Margaret River. Grenache and Mourvèdre are also popular, both on their own and alongside Shiraz in Rhône Blends. Chardonnay is common throughout the country and made in a wide range of styles. Sauvignon Blanc has recently surged in popularity to compete with New Zealand’s distinctive version and Semillon is often blended in Margaret River or shines on its own in the Hunter Valley. Riesling thrives in the cool-climate Clare and Eden Valleys. Sticky-sweet fortified wine Rutherglen is a beloved regional specialty of Victoria.