Read MoreMission Our mission at Rieslingfreak is to handcraft Rieslings that we believe are representative of both region and style. Our growers are like family to us and play an interaural role in the Rieslingfreak Rieslings. We show Riesling's diversity through styles and are driven by what our forefathers have done in GermanyA sense of Place The sense of place for Rieslingfreak is working with some of the top and iconic Riesling regions and sub-regions in Australia. The Clare Valley is one of Australia's oldest wine regions and is situated 120 km north of Adelaide. Our Clare Valley vineyard is situated in White Hutt, just north of the Clare Township. The vineyards have heavy red clay soils over limestone. The heavier soils provide a fruit-forward and generous Riesling. The Polish Hill River Vineyard is 5 km south from our Clare Vineyard.Polish Hill River is a sub-region of Clare, situated between Sevenhill and Mintaro. It is one of Clare's iconic Riesling regions, with the soil profile containing grey-brown loam, over sandy limestone, and shale rock. The rock in the region delivering wines of a flinty and mineral style, Eden Valley is situated on the Barossa rangers' eastern side. The vineyards vary from sandy loam over shale rock to loam soil over medium clay. Rieslings from Eden Valley are often showing white blossom florals and riper citrus notes. Meet the Team John Hughes As the name would suggest, I am a freak for all things Riesling… What I love most about my line of work is that for me, it's not a job, it's my passion. I don't see my occupation as work, as each day I am creating and working with what I love… Riesling! Growing up on the family vineyard in the beautiful Clare Valley (a wine region known for its superb Riesling), it was only natural that I had an appreciation for the Riesling variety from a young age. And as I grew up, so did my passion for Riesling. Once old enough to appreciate a quality Riesling, I found a new appreciation for many European Rieslings and kept a close eye on what a handful of German winemakers were doing. To this day, I still keep an eye on German winemaking techniques and enjoy referencing their style for inspiration so I can apply to the Rieslingfreak collection.With love for the sweeter white wines, I've stocked my cellar with many Kabinett and Spatlese styles from his German counterparts. I can safely credit my appreciation for aged Riesling to my parents; hence you will always find some great aged Riesling in my 30-year-old cellar.While I love that each and every You can enjoy Rieslingfreak wine on its own, I love the role that food plays in transforming and completely revolutionizing the entire food and wine experience. On weekends, you'll always find me in the kitchen - and a glass of Riesling is never too far away! Mark Thomas It all started with a glass of Pewsey Vale Riesling in Mark's younger years, and from here, his love for Riesling has evolved and grown!While he never entertained the idea of winemaking as a career, food, and wine quickly became a big part of his life. Working in several top Adelaide restaurants in the late '70s and early '80s, Mark became hooked on Riesling's versatile variety, and it's no surprise that it soon became his go-to wine. Mark loved the hospitality lifestyle and the many different Rieslings he enjoyed from all over the world.He went on to work for Hilton Hotels in Adelaide and then onto the Hilton in London, before joining Hyatt Hotels.Mark was fortunate enough to enjoy stints in London, Hong Kong, and Singapore with his family, but in 2011 they made the move to the Barossa, and in early 2012, he and I met at the Barossa Farmers Market in a chance encounter. With a shared passion for Riesling, it is fair to say that the two of us Riesling-freaks hit it off instantly, and as they say, the rest is history. Rieslingfreak Winemaking Philosophy, The philosophy of Rieslingfreak is to provide Riesling enthusiasts with the finest expressions of the variety, representative of different regions and styles. Most of our Rieslings are harvested by machine, in the cool of the night and arrive at the winery early morning for processing. Unlike most Riesling producers, we do not press our Rieslings. We use a 'spin and drain' method with the grapes to ensure the berries are treated very softly while maintaining the juice's purity. With Riesling winemaking, three key elements require the utmost detail and attention. These are fruit, acid, and sweetness. I see it as my job, as a Riesling winemaker, I believe my role is always to deliver a 'balanced' Riesling that harmoniously combines these three elements. As growing conditions vary from year to year, it is my job to adapt to the conditions and produce wines that highlight each vintage's best characteristics. It is for this reason that I am unable to use numbers to steer my decision making. I rely on my sense of taste, both in the vineyard and winery, to deliver a balanced Riesling that is true to style.To create a great Riesling, we start in the vineyard with the fruit, looking for ripening and concentration of flavors. With the juice, we evaluate the acid and adjust if needed, to ensure we have great length and raciness. We ferment the juice using modern processing methods, including juice inoculation and the use of cultured yeast. There is much debate over 'wild' yeast and 'cultured' yeast. However, we choose to use cultured yeast for two reasons. The first being that we seek continuity of our wines from year to year, only displaying vintage differences. We also want to show you a true example of region and style. We believe the use of cultured yeast has a big role in this part of the winemaking process.As the wine ends fermentation, we ensure sufficient sweetness, and acid is achieved that compliments the fruit profile of the Riesling.
The Wines Rieslingfreak No.2 Polish Hill River Riesling The Polish Hill River Vineyard was acquired by Rob and Lyn Jaeschke in 2010 and is known locally as the Hill River Vineyard. With Max Schubert (of Penfold's fame) planting the first vines on the property in 1981, the vineyard was destined for big things. Situated in Polish Hill River, approximately 3 miles south-east of the Clare township, the vineyard is planted on grey-brown loam, over sandy limestone, and shale rock. Planted at 460m above sea level, the average rainfall is 625mm. Rieslingfreak No.2 is a dry style of Riesling, showcasing many of the Polish Hill River region's refinements. The limestone and shale rock soil profile is reflected in the wine with mineral and slate notes and underlying fresh citrus characters, predominantly lemon and grapefruit. Wines from this vineyard can be consumed upon release or cellared for many years. Rieslingfreak No.33 Clare Valley Growers Riesling Rieslingfreak No.33 is incorporated both our growers in the Clare Valley. Richard and Anne Hughes (John's Parents) and Robert and Lyn Jaeschke from Polish Hill River. Situated on the flats in the middle of a valley, White Hutt vineyard has its own very unique microclimate. The vineyard is planted on heavy loam and red terra rossa soil, with limestone subsoil. It is situated 500m above sea level, with an average rainfall of 550mm. The heavy red soils in the vineyard were contributing to the fruit generosity seen in this wine. The Polish Hill River in the wine provides the wine with an acid profile and drive. The wine is made in a great and refreshing fruit-driven style with a soft, velvety palate of extraordinary length. It has classic flavors of ripe lemon and lime and some tropical fruit notes. It drinks well young, but will also reward with cellaring. Rieslingfreak No.44 Eden Valley Riesling Fruit for this Eden Valley Riesling is sourced from three different vineyards situated between Eden Valley and Flaxman's Valley. Two vineyards in Flaxman Valley, being Ben Zander and Michael Mason. Milton Tscharke has a small vineyard located in the heart of the Eden Valley. The vineyards are situated approximately 500m above sea level, and an average yearly rainfall of 650mm. The soils vary from shallow grey sandy loam over shale rock, to loam soil over light-medium clay, with high quartz rock and gravel content. Each vineyard contributes something different to the wine. Eden Valley Rieslings often showcase delicacy and refinement. Rieslingfreak No.44 typically demonstrates this, with an aroma of citrus, talcum powder and white blossom, and flavors of lime and lemon, with a sweet spice background. The wine drinks well young but will reward with cellaring.