Karra Yerta Eden Valley Riesling 2008

Lately, I’ve been thinking about wine styles and how some come to be defined as classics over time. In a way, it’s more complex than the literary canon, for example, in which a single, unchanging artifact is evaluated and re-evaluated over time. With wine, a particular combination of variety and region remains static but a whole set of variables — everything from particular vintage conditions to winemaking to long term climatic variations — ensures a constant evolution. So, how to pin down the essentials?

This wine poses the question because it seems to present atypically at first. The nose is heady, hinting at tropical richness without feeling at all broad. There are wisps of paw paw, honey and the sort of spice that would feel at home in a Gew├╝rztraminer. These elements are at the fore, and for a moment mask a backbone of fine, detailed minerality and a curl of lime rind that are all about the Eden Valley.

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