Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

RayLen Vineyards 2005 Riesling  (Yadkin Valley)

RayLen Vineyards

2005 Riesling
(Yadkin Valley)

The Yadkin Valley appellation in western North Carolina may be a relative come-lately in American winegrowing regions (only approved as an AVA in early 2003), but wines like this show why there is so much optimism in this region, which has been growing leaps and bounds since attaining official appellation status.

The brilliant golden yellow color of the RayLen Vineyards Riesling leads to a nose that is more reserved than the deep color would suggest. But I appreciate this less blousy approach – a wine needn’t leap out at you with full-frontal exposure to catch your attention, and, quietly, this Riesling offers up a subtle floral perfume of ginger flowers and red roses with orange peel, beeswax and honey notes. The wine is viscous and extracted with a slightly raspy grip that you often find in Alsace Pinot Gris. Along with the intense color, this all suggests that this wine was likely afforded some contact with the character giving skins before juice separation.

The flavors mirror the aromas with a mild spicy lilt. What is not present in this wine is that steely mineral character that may be more familiar in Rieslings of cooler regions – namely Finger Lakes and Michigan. Rather, this wine, with 12.8 percent natural alcohol and a nicely integrated degree of residual sugar, reflects an altogether different regional style, representing its southern climate and warm growing season well in a distinctive regional expression of the variety.

Reviewed October 4, 2007 by Adam Dial.

Other reviewed wines from RayLen Vineyards


The Wine

Winery: RayLen Vineyards
Vintage: 2005
Wine: Riesling
Appellation: Yadkin Valley
Grapes: Riesling (80%), Viognier (20%)
Price: 750ml $12.00

Review Date: 10/4/2007

The Reviewer

Adam Dial

Brought up in a family with winery ventures in both California and Canada, Adam Dial seeks and appreciates diversity and individuality in wines. He is a Sommelier with more than two decades of experience in the hospitality and service industry, and is a respected wine educator, judge and industry advisor. In 2003 Adam Dial co-founded Appellation America.