There’s a collection of quality-focused producers, rather micro in scale, in and around the Flaxman Valley who are together creating a real stir amongst the cognoscenti. Flaxman is one such producer, and I’m pleased tonight to be tasting the latest estate Riesling, sourced from vines considerably older than myself.
The Flaxman Riesling style is typically a fuller, richer interpretation of the grape, and this is no exception. Where the Karra Yerta wines from the same area, for example, play with delicacy and pastel hues, this is a full throttle streak of sunlight, yet still identifiably Eden Valley, preferring floral and talc notes to the Clare’s juicy flavours. The nose first, which is full of bath salts, powder, puffs of citrus oil and spongey pith. It isn’t out-and-out powerful so much as firm and persistent, carving a clear line into one’s senses and never letting up until it’s time to sniff again.
The palate is an icepick of a thing, so cleanly articulated are the flavours and sharp the impact. But it’s not clumsy; indeed, there’s masses of detail as the wine unfolds from entry, notes of slate, talc and citrus rind each dovetailing neatly, culminating in a cool, crystalline climax on the middle palate. From here the wine softens marginally, some tropical flavours like pineapple adding a rich opulence to the flavour profile. Nice dry texture kicks in as the finish takes over, ending things on a flinty flourish of Riesling goodness.
You won’t go wrong with this.