Wairau River Botrytised Reisling (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label
Wairau River Botrytised Reisling (half-bottle) 1998 Front Label

Wairau River Botrytised Reisling (half-bottle) 1998

  • WE90
375ML / 0% ABV
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375ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This superb example of botrytised dessert wine balances beautifully the intensely concentrated fragrant lime and passion fruit aromas of Riesling with the honey and marmalade characteristics that are distinctive of the classic noble rot. These flavors will develop and mature as the wine ages in the bottle.

The weather conditions in 1998 in this particular Riesling vineyard were perfect for the growth of noble rot. We ultimately hand selected berries in mid May pressed these at 43 degrees Brix. The result is wine that is intensely concentrated and expresses classic botrytis flavours reminiscent of limes and marmalade. Wines such as these are rare indeed and extended cellaring is recommended. -Phil Rose, Proprietor

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Wairau River

Wairau River

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Wairau River, New Zealand
Wairau River Wairau River Vineyard Winery Image

The edge of the Wairau River is a special place for growing grapes. A place where soil, climate and terrain combine to help produce outstanding wines. Phil and Chris Rose established their vineyards here in 1978 and today the extended Rose family produce some of the best wines Marlborough has to offer. Wairau River holds the Sustainable Certification from Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand. 


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A relatively young but extremely promising wine producing country, New Zealand is widely recognized for its distinctive wines made from the aromatic, Sauvignon blanc.

The world’s most southerly vineyards are found here, with significant climatic variation both between and within the warmer North Island and the cooler South Island. Overall, the climate is maritime, with plenty of rainfall, as well as abundant sunshine. Producers have almost unilaterally embraced cutting-edge winery technology, resulting in clean, high-quality wines at every price point from wallet-friendly to premium.

Sauvignon blanc, known here for its trademark herbaceous character, is at its best in Marlborough but thrives throughout the nation, accounting for an overwhelming majority of the country’s exports. While this is indeed the country’s most planted and successful variety, it is certainly not the only New Zealand grape capable of delighting wine lovers.

Chardonnay is the second-most important white variety and takes on a supple texture with citrus and tropical fruit aromas in Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay, respectively. Pinot noir, second behind Sauvignon blanc in national production numbers, is at its best in Central Otago—the most southerly winegrowing region in the world! These wines are known for bright and juicy red fruit. Taking cues from the wines of Alsace, aromatic varieties like Pinot Gris, Riesling and Gewürztraminer shine in Martinborough, while red Bordeaux varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot have found success in Hawke’s Bay. Throughout New Zealand but especially in Marlborough, Pinot noir and Chardonnay are used to produce traditional method sparkling wines.

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Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining its identity. A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, this versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Somm Secret—Given how difficult it is to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling from the label, here are some clues to find the dry ones. First, look for the world “trocken.” (“Halbtrocken” or “feinherb” mean off-dry.) Also a higher abv usually indicates a drier Riesling.

PIM61352_1998 Item# 14364

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