Wine: Crunch time

By Yvonne Lorkin

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Riesling is like the video for that Katy Perry song Hot N Cold. While one bottle stands demure and sweet at the church, the other's in her wedding dress, smashing your car to pieces. It's a beautifully bi-polar variety...

Greenhough Apple Valley Nelson Riesling 2016 $20

Every year I marvel at the amount of intense Granny Smith and Jazz-apple crispness and concentrated, spritzy, lime-laden sweetness that they manage to cram into this wine. Sourced from a tiny, north-facing vineyard on Apple Valley Rd (cutest road name ever) overlooking the Moutere estuary, it's terrifically tangy, taut and ultra-refreshing. It hits that perfect balance between natural sweetness and knife-edge acidity to create a wine that's absolutely mouthwatering with spicy tandoori chicken.

Johner Estate Wairarapa Riesling 2016 $24

Karl Heinz Johner makes wine in opposite hemispheres, with family estates in Baden, (in Germany's Kaiserstuhl region) and in Martinborough's Gladstone sub-region. Riesling is a hero grape for him and he loves the crunchy green acidity, pear notes, baked apple, lime zest and honey characters that Martinborough grapes give so much, he's decided to spend most of his time looking after it in New Zealand, while his son Patrick looks after the German operation. Sip with Thai green apple salad.

Two Rivers 'Juliet' Marlborough Riesling 2015 $20

Righto. Hands up who wants a riesling positively erupting with mandarin, apple and lime! Hands up who wants riesling that rocks a splash of sweetness but has crisp, clean, zing-a-ling acidity and a long, racy mouthfeel! Hands up ... wait, you've got no more hands. Just as well you've got tastebuds to enjoy the waves of honeysuckle edged with hints of beeswax then right? Sip this with a steaming bowl of Singapore Chilli Crab.

- Canvas

Yvonne Lorkin is co-founder and chief tasting officer of and a Wine Writers of NZ member.

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