Watervale in the Clare Valley and Eden Valley in the Barossa, have the track record and undisputed reputation for producing some of Australia's greatest Rieslings.
Classic Watervale Riesling has volumes of lime fruit flavour and floral notes with bright, fresh citrus acidity. Whereas the Eden Valley lies at an altitude of approximately 500 meters, typically producing more delicate Rieslings that tend to display more rose petal, green apple and spice characteristics with mineral acidity.
The Vickery Watervale Riesling is a classic example of this wine style. Bright vivacious colour, lifted aromatics with intense fruit flavours on the middle palate. Fresh lime acidity completes a long and persistent finish.
RRP AU $23.00 | 2017 ORDER NOW
2017 Watervale Riesling
95+ points – Kim Brebach – BWU$20 – Sep 2017
Of the 2016s, I prefer the Eden Valley Riesling. Of the 2017s, the Watervale Riesling is the better looking right now. It has the same fruit intensity with more body, depth and length. It also has a creamy mouthfeel once you get past the ripe limes. Already good drinking but has the legs for the distance. 95+ points.
92 points – Campbell Mattinson – The Wine Front – Sep 2017
Clare Valley riesling from the Waterfall sub-region. The front label carries the code WVR 143 CBK. Textbook Watervale riesling with its lemon and lime characters to the forefront, though it has more body than has become the norm. More colour too. Lime blossom, juice and leaf, some orange-like notes and that rush of lemon/lemongrass. Flavour – not just acid – carries through the finish beautifully.
Top 20 Australian Drinks of 2017 - Max Allen – The Australian Financial Review – Nov 2017
John Vickery is a legend in Australian wine circles. He started his career as a winemaker at Leo Buring 60 years ago, producing Rieslings in the 1970s that are still considered benchmarks of the style. Now, in partnership with Phil Lehmann (winemaking son of another legend, Peter Lehmann), Vickery makes Rieslings that proudly bear his own name on the label. And they’re brilliant: this latest vintage is chock-full of moreish lime-juicy deliciousness, hallmarks of a great young Watervale Riesling.
94 points - Steven Creber – James Halliday Website – Feb 2018
WVR 143 CBK. In addition to the Castine and Koerner blocks, this release includes fruit from the 86yo plantings on the Brazel Vineyard. Inviting bouquet, with citrus fruit, citrus flowers and the bath salts aromas which are all so typical. Lovely balance through the palate, the flavours fresh and quite delicate. The natural acidity which is real characteristic of this vintage comes into play as well, with distinctive softness and very fine, subtle persistence on the finish.
9.2/10 - Max Crus – Grape Expectations – Apr 2018
Not sure what the mysterious code on the label is, but possibly the secret to gorgeous Riesling, and they’ve cracked it.
2016 Watervale Riesling
94 points – Kim Brebach – BWU$20 – Jul 2016
The Watervale Riesling is the more approachable of the two, and is a tad less fine and delicate. That said, it’s another great Riesling that also shows that creamy texture that is the hallmark of great South Australian Riesling.
92 Points – Gary Walsh – The Wine Front – Jul 2016
Freezing cold in Sydney today, just the kind of weather for a nice cool Riesling. Youthful floral perfume, sweet lime and spice. Light bodied, but full flavoured, with juicy citrus fruit, subtle chalky texture and a sweet lime and lemongrass finish. It’s a wine of easy going personality and drinkability, and while it’s pretty fine, it does have a feel of chunkiness: it’s very good all the same.
Max Allen – The Australian – Jul 2016
John Vickery is to Australian wine what Don Bradman is to cricket: a bloody legend who set the standards by which all others are judged — except John’s still alive and still making wine, in conjunction with Phil Lehmann, son of another deadset legend, Peter Lehmann. Vickery’s forte is riesling: his Leo Buring wines of the 1960s and 70s defined the classic, pure, dry, long-lived Australian style.So when the young Lehmann coaxed Vickery out of retirement a couple of years ago to finally have a crack at producing some wine with his own name emblazoned on the label, what other variety could they have chosen but riesling? Echoing John’s great Leo Buring Leonay and Richmond Grove wines of old, only two Vickery wines are produced: a Watervale riesling from the Clare Valley and an Eden Valley riesling from the hills above the Barossa. The 2016 vintages of both have just been released and they’re gorgeous: the Watervale is pure lime-juicy refreshment, seriously more-ish, with lovely floral citrus blossom aromas leading on to a mouthful of crunchy white grapes; the Eden Valley is also beautifully pure, precise and focused, with a little less of the juicy grapes and more of the citrus cut. The good news is that these wines retail for $23 a bottle — closer to $20 or less if you shop around and buy by the case. And I suggest you think about doing just that: they are mouth-wateringly delicious now but you can be confident they will also age slowly and deliciously across the next 10, 15 even 20 years.”
91 points – Huon Hooke – Hooked on Wine – Oct 2016
Medium-yellow colour, bright and forward, with a rich ripe lemony aroma, almost tending toasty. The wine is soft and gentle in the mouth, with subtlety and balance. Dried wildflower nuances. The texture is seamless and fine. Drinking well already. .
95 points – James Halliday – Wine Companion – Nov 2016
WVR 252 CK. From the Castine and Koerner Vineyards (red dirt over calcrete soils), fermented separately in stainless steel. Light, bright straw-green; manages to fill the senses with its Catherine wheel of citrus fruits, already with great balance and varietal expression. A prime each way bet, now or later
92 points – Toni Paterson MW – The Real Review – Jan 2017
Sourced from four different Riesling blocks in the Clare Valley. The florals in this Watervale Riesling are incredibly lovely, and the fruit is supported by crisp acidity. There is a juiciness to the fruit and a raciness to the palate. It is incredibly delicious and intensely flavoured. Perfect for summer drinking.
Legendary Riesling-maker John Vickery releases two supurb-value wines each year and, while I like his Eden Valley Riesling, I absolutely adore his Watervale: a big wallop of almost gin-like juniper and citrus aroma, followed by a moreish mouthwateringly delicious limey flavour sloshing across the tongue.
95 Points – Tony Keys – The Key Report – Nov 2017
Vickery ‘WVR 252 CK’ Watervale Riesling 2016: Pale golden colour shot through with streaks of green, it changes colour as the glass is twisted to different angles, the nose for me is defined riesling and gorgeous. Across the palate its still showing youthful awkwardness but the beauty of the wine is apparent, drinks OK now but will drink better later in 2017 and better still in years to come 95 points give away price at $23.
Eden Valley Riesling
Eden Valley lies on the eastern border of the Barossa ranges in South Australia.
Sitting at between 400-600 metres above sea level, Eden Valley provides a long and slow ripening period, producing fruit with complex flavours and natural acidity.
RRP AU $27.00 | 2017 ORDER NOW
2017 Eden Valley Riesling
92 points – Kim Brebach – BWU$20 – Sep 2017
Very similar to the Rieslingfreak below – even though that one is from Clare – in the sense that the ripe lime fruit is aromatic, delicate and pretty. The wine lacks the tension, length and perfect balance of the glorious 2016. 92 points
92 points – Gary Walsh – The Wine Front – Sep 2017
Ginger, ripe lemon and a bit of Granny’s handbag. Light in body, perfume and lemon barley, with a squeeze of lime, soft chalky texture, even acidity with a slight coarseness, and a pretty, and pretty long finish. Very nice. Needs a little more time in bottle to settle.
GOLD MEDAL – NZ International Wine Awards – Sep 2017
91 points – Huon Hooke – Hooked on Wine – Sep 2017
Stunning light, bright green/yellow colour. The bouquet is spicy and redolent of lemon pith and grapefruit pith. Lots of nuances. The palate is soft and rounded, full and overt, seemingly more developed than other 2017 rieslings. On the down-side, it lacks a little in tension and length. A fuller style, generously flavoured.
93 points - Mike Bennie – WBM Magazine – Dec 2017
Lovely drinking here. Bickford’s lime cordial scents with frangipani notes. Pretty as. The palate is juicy, cut with fine, tonic water-like feel, dart-shaped and long. There’s an approachability in youth that screams summer drinking. A finely wrought Riesling.
95 points - Steven Creber – James Halliday Website – Dec 2017
EVR 604 MZR. From the Zander, Mason and Riley Vineyards in Eden Valley. Parcels kept separate until the final blending and bottling. Made of slightly sterner stuff than its Watervale stable mate, but just as attractive as a young wine. Very pure aromas and flavours, the fruit sweetness harnessed by the gently firm acidity. Like many ’17 SA rieslings, excellent each-way drinking; highly enjoyable now and with great ageing potential.
90 Toni Paterson – The Real Review – Sep 2017
Gentle and quiet on the nose, which is in contrast with the palate which is rounded and highly intense. Strong sweet-lemon flavours, with a generous middle and pleasing texture. Good value.
9/10 - Max Crus – Grape Expectations – Apr 2018
If you’re hankering for a rose and don’t have one, Riesling is the next best thing, and this is one of the next best Rieslings.
2016 Eden Valley Riesling
96++ points – Kim Brebach – BWU $20 – Jul 2016
The wine has just been released, and hasn’t hit the shops yet. When it does, it will sell for less than $20. Regardless, this is a great Riesling, and I’ve been waiting for this trifecta: John Vickery, Phil Lehmann and a great Riesling vintage in SA. It’s a winner after the mixed blessings of 2014 and the heat of 2015, displaying the usual ripe limes and talc overtones but adding an almost creamy texture and a superfine acid backbone. All it needs is time – I reckon it will improve for 10 years or more. A classic from a great team.
Winsor Dobbin – Winsor’s Choice – Jul 2016
There is no grape variety that offers better value for money in Australia than riesling; which particularly shines in the Clare and Eden valleys of South Australia. Phil Lehmann, talented son of the late Peter Lehmann, makes excellent examples in both regions under the Vickery label, which pays tribute to arguably Australia’s greatest-ever riesling maker, John Vickery, who is a consultant in the making of these wines, The 2016 releases are both excellent, but for me the Eden Valley wine just edged out the Watervale example, although it was a photo finish. It is slightly rounder, maybe a little more adult, while retaining the essential citrus and acid elements. Just lovely.
95 Points – Tony Love – Top 100 – Jul 2016
Carrying the prestigious name of one of Australia’s most renowned riesling craftsmen, the now (almost) retired John Vickery who mentors winemaker Phil Lehmann in the creation of this and a companion Watervale version, this exudes the purest of lemon notes in zest, flesh and leaf, beautiful ripe from four family run vineyards and with exciting natural acidity in discreet balance. It’s a joyous aperitif
Max Allen – The Australian – Jul 2016
John Vickery is to Australian wine what Don Bradman is to cricket: a bloody legend who set the standards by which all others are judged — except John’s still alive and still making wine, in conjunction with Phil Lehmann, son of another deadset legend, Peter Lehmann. Vickery’s forte is riesling: his Leo Buring wines of the 1960s and 70s defined the classic, pure, dry, long-lived Australian style. So when the young Lehmann coaxed Vickery out of retirement a couple of years ago to finally have a crack at producing some wine with his own name emblazoned on the label, what other variety could they have chosen but riesling? Echoing John’s great Leo Buring Leonay and Richmond Grove wines of old, only two Vickery wines are produced: a Watervale riesling from the Clare Valley and an Eden Valley riesling from the hills above the Barossa. The 2016 vintages of both have just been released and they’re gorgeous: the Watervale is pure lime-juicy refreshment, seriously more-ish, with lovely floral citrus blossom aromas leading on to a mouthful of crunchy white grapes; the Eden Valley is also beautifully pure, precise and focused, with a little less of the juicy grapes and more of the citrus cut. The good news is that these wines retail for $23 a bottle — closer to $20 or less if you shop around and buy by the case. And I suggest you think about doing just that: they are mouth-wateringly delicious now but you can be confident they will also age slowly and deliciously across the next 10, 15 even 20 years
94 points – Gary Walsh – The Wine Front – Jul 2016
I can’t be dealing with typing the EVR 153 ZMR code into the title, even though I just typed it into the introduction. There’s enough cryptic stuff in the world already, what with the million passwords you need to get through life. Gosh, I’m starting to sound old…get off my lawn! Textbook Eden Valley Riesling. It’s mineral with a subtle lavender perfume, spice, grapefruit and lime. Clean and direct, pure acidity and visions of mineral water flowing over stones, if you take my meaning. The finish is clean, crunchy and very long.Beautiful wine. Dead set bargain. You could even twist my arm to rate it one point higher, maybe.
96 points – James Halliday – The Wine Companion Online – Oct 2016
EVR 153 ZMR. From 15-17yo low yielding vines from the Zander, Mason and Riley Vineyards, each parcel fermented separately in stainless steel before final selection and blending. Gleaming straw-green; classic young Eden Valley riesling, its citrus aromas and flavours on the midpoint between lime and lemon, the acidity flowing calmly on in the wake of the fruit, purity the watchword
90 points – Huon Hooke – Hooked on Wine – Oct 2016
Mid-yellow colour, forward for its age. The bouquet is rich and up-front, ripe and generous, with echoes of lemon butter and baked lemon pudding. The wine is full, ample and concentrated; it’s not a wine of delicacy or restraint, but accessible already and very giving. A very good, fuller-blown style which drinks well early. It could also surprise by cellaring well
94 points Tony Keys – The Key Report – Mar 2017
More green than gold, the nose needs working at but if persistent it appears as a mix of citrus led by lime, on the palate its stealth, it starts shy and slowly increases intensity as it travels, again it’s a young wine and will be better later in the year, Christmas will be about right also a long life ahead 94 points perhaps a couple more to come, don’t buy a bottle at $23 buy a case