2019 Desire Lines Experimental Series #3: Wiley Vineyard Riesling
Wiley Vineyard was one of the first few vineyards to be planted in Anderson Valley following the repeal of Prohibition, with a block of Riesling planted in 1976 on a ridgeline above the valley floor, encircled by redwoods and Douglas fir trees. Since then, Wiley has gained prestigious neighbors – Bearwallow and Kiser vineyards are just across the highway, and Wendling Vineyard is on the other side of the ridge. Wiley Vineyard is colder than Cole Ranch with a prominent marine influence from the nearby Pacific Ocean, giving a wine that’s relatively more taught and laser-focused. Because the two wines are made so similarly (whole cluster pressing with cold settling in tank, followed by fermentation in neutral barrels, where the wines are left on fine lees until bottling in the summer) the difference between the wines is simply vineyard expression. Whereas Cole Ranch is extravagantly perfumed and exotic in the glass with a bracing tension and viscousness on the palate, Wiley is pure and lean on the palate (3 g/L RS) and characterized by lemon citrus, resinous herbs, and a slight brackishness on the nose. In other words, it tastes just as it should – like Riesling from a cold, maritime vineyard at the edge of ripening in the Deep End of Anderson Valley.
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