Current Issue #488

Wine Review: Pewsey Vale's "Damn Delicious" Contours Riesling

The 2011 vintage is a topic we’ve discussed before . Many commentators wrote the entire vintage off, painting it with very broad brushstrokes, but despite the Chicken Little outlook a wonderful thing happened — we learnt that excellent and downright delicious wines can indeed come from challenging vintages.


Yalumba’s Pewsey Vale vineyard in Eden Valley is a special site, especially the Contours Block. The climate is cool, the soils lean and the wines from that particular site always seem to speak clearly of their site. Certified organic since 2013, the farming here also adheres to biodynamic principles, further nurturing the vines themselves and also the surrounding flora and fauna.

Pale straw in colour with captivating toasty aromas floating from the glass, lime and grapefruit notes flow into the schnoz, followed by lighter notes of melon and red apples. Hints of hay, toasted brioche, honey, dried mandarin rind, nougat, orange blossom and lighter wafts of musk and marzipan.

Despite the prevailing weather conditions, it is a wine that holds its line tightly. Focus and precision have always been the leitmotif of The Contours and this release is no exception. Again lime and grapefruit characters dominate, along with hints of honeysuckle, dried citrus rind, blossom, lanolin, almond paste and soft spice. Crisp, vibrant acidity propels the wine along nicely and the finish trails off with hints of gentle lime and toasty notes.

It is a wine that will continue to improve over the mid–term with careful cellaring but it’s pretty damn delicious now.

PEWSEY VALE 2011 The Contours Eden Valley Riesling


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