Simone Madden-Grey
The views expressed in db Reader do not represent the views of the drinks business.

Riesling Downunder 2015

Riesling Downunder took place recently in Melbourne, Australia, providing the perfect opportunity for trade and consumers alike to sample a wide range of Riesling from around the world.

Untitled I had the opportunity to sit down between events with Hunter Smith of Frankland Estate, one of the founders of this Riesling celebration.

Riesling Downunder can be traced back to the Frankland Estate International Riesling Tasting (FIERT), established in 2001 by Judi Cullam and Barrie Smith of Frankland Estate. Although Frankland Estate is located in the Great Southern GI on the west coast of Australia, the first event was held in Sydney and attracted good support from the industry.

As interest in Riesling continued to gain momentum the opportunity to work with Dr. Loosen, the VDP Rheingau of Germany and Chateau Ste. Michelle of Washington State presented itself, thus the Riesling Coalition was born and its first event held in 2009. This year’s event in Australia was presented by the Riesling Coalition together with renowned Riesling producers; Pikes Wines and Jim Barry Wines of Australia and New Zealand winery Framingham Wines.

The Riesling Coalition present an event each year with the location alternating between Australia, the USA and Germany. Each one offers a different experience for producers and attendees, ensuring the event remains dynamic and relevant to the industry. Australia’s event, Riesling Downunder, has attracted a clutch of experts including Jancis Robinson MW and Stuart Pigott for the 2012 event in Sydney with Stuart returning for 2015 and being joined by Tim Atkin MW to name but a few.


Credit: Riesling Downunder

Despite growing in size, one constant has been the underlying philosophy of promoting and celebrating Riesling rather than promoting any particular brand or style. The extensive list of producers from around the world together with masterclasses covering a variety of topics reinforces this.

A welcome addition to the event was an extra day devoted to the public. Entitled Riesling Riot and building on the success of the 2012 consumer tastings, things kicked off on Sunday afternoon with suitably sunny skies and a waterfront venue down at the Docklands. Needless to say the oysters on offer were very popular and a perfect way to showcase the many styles of Riesling available. The public didn’t disappoint with record numbers in attendance.

In addition to increased customer interest the all important industry support is continuing to develop with Riesling finding a place on more wine lists and members of the hospitality industry excelling in their role as brand ambassador for this chameleon of a grape.


Credit: Riesling Downunder

The next opportunity for you to embrace your inner Riesling Rioter and take part in one of these events is the USA event – Riesling Rendezvous – which is set to take place during June 2016 in Seattle. Following that will be the German event in the Rheingau in 2017 and then back to the Southern Hemisphere for Riesling Downunder 2018 in Sydney.

Finally, Hunter’s musings on Riesling nicely summed up the mood of the event; “If you were stuck on an island with one varietal, (because) you can drink so many styles … I think it would have to be Riesling” and I certainly concur!

To read more from the Happy Wine Woman here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

We encourage debate in the comments section and always welcome feedback, but if you spot something you don't think is right, we ask that you leave an accurate email address so we can get back to you if we need to.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Fine Wine Sales Executive

Roberson Wine
London, UK

Account Manager - London Trade Sales

Bancroft Wines Ltd
London, UK

Brand Manager

Elixir Distillers
Park Royal, London UK

Marketing Assistant

Speciality Brands
Park Royal, London, UK

Key Account Manager

MMI Maldives

Financial Controller

London City Bond
Barking, UK

Duty Manager

The Whisky Exchange
Great Portland Street, London

Spirits Advisor

The Whisky Exchange
London, UK

International Sales Manager

Elixir Distillers
Park Royal, London, UK

Millésime Bio 2020

27th Jan 2020

Maisons Marques et Domaines Annual Tasting

London,United Kingdom
29th Jan 2020

Austrian Wine Tasting

London,United Kingdom
3rd Feb 2020
Click to view more