James Halliday Top 100 Wines of 2022
Kilikanoon was founded in 1997 by winemaker and proprietor Kevin Mitchell. This iconic riesling is 100% Watervale fruit sourced from vineyards only minutes from the Kilikanoon winery. Hand selected parcels of Reisling are chosen from the famed Golden Hillside vineyards, which includes the original Mort’s Block vineyard - planted over 40 years ago by Kevin's father Mort.
"There is a classic style of Riesling that never goes out of date. Mort's Block epitomises that classic approach in its concentration of fruit and singular purity of expression. Floral and spring-like in scent: citrus blossom, lime, spicy musk, orange peel. Youthful, taut in structure with emerging white peach, ginger spice and citrus flavours. Time is on its side. Mort's Block boasts old vines planted in 1970 and grown on red loamy soils over limestone. That limestone plays a role. There's an almost effortless balance here with mineral-laced fineness. Watervale Riesling in a great year deserves more time in the cellar, but few will be able to resist opening a bottle right now." Jeni Port
"The 2022 Mort’s Block Riesling is exceptional with a crisp acid line that is truly reflective of the famed soil of Watervale. The fruit intensity that Mort’s Riesling is known for is underpinned by a driving flavour of the limestone and slate of the vineyard. Refined, yet mouth-filling and flavour persistent, this is one of the finest Mort’s blocks produced." Kilikanoon
"As good a Watervale riesling as I've had in a very long time. The floral bouquet leads into a gloriously long palate of striking intensity, bursting with lime juice fruit and crystalline acidity. Simply electric." Nick Munday, Canterbury Wines - 97 points and Special Value Wine ★
"Old, low-yielding vines. Light, bright green-quartz. The delicately perfumed bouquet takes some coaxing to reveal itself, the palate following without the need of persuasion. It is bright and lively, bringing citrus, Granny Smith apple, and slinky acidity from the first sip through to the lingering finish. Drink by 2040." James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion - 96 points and Top 100 Wines of 2022 and Special Value Wine ★
"Impressive juxtaposition of concentration and tension with a clean focus of pristine kaffir lime. lemon and granny smith apple fruit surging forth, carried by wonderfully mineral, talc powder structure. Pristine and brilliant, with grand potential." Tyson Stelzer, Wine Business Monthly (WBM) - 96 points
"Riesling comes in many different forms – skin contact, fermentation in oak, wild ferment, etc, – but there is a classic style of Riesling that never goes out of date. Mort's Block epitomises that classic approach in its concentration of fruit and singular purity of expression. Floral and spring-like in scent: citrus blossom, lime, spicy musk, orange peel. Youthful, taut in structure with emerging white peach, ginger spice and citrus flavours. Time is on its side. Mort's Block, which is the basis for this label, boasts old vines planted in 1970 and grown on red loamy soils over limestone. That limestone plays a role. There's an almost effortless balance here with mineral-laced fineness. Watervale Riesling in a great year deserves more time in the cellar, but few will be able to resist opening a bottle right now. Drink: 2022-2035." Jeni Port, Wine Pilot – 95 points
James Halliday Top 100 Wines of 2022
Special Value Wine - Canterbury Wines ★
Special Value Wine – Halliday Wine Companion ★
About the winery
Winemaker and proprietor Kevin Mitchell
Kilikanoon was founded in 1997 when winemaker and proprietor Kevin Mitchell purchased the property of the same name in the hamlet of Penwortham in the Clare Valley. Hailing from a long line of wine grape growers, Kevin now had the opportunity to turn the vision of creating his own wine brand into a reality.
Kevin's father, Mort Mitchell, has been a defining influence, planting and tending to Kilikanoon's Golden Hillside suite of vineyards including the famed Mort's Block, for over 40 years. Kevin's fascination with terroir is a result of years spent playing and eventually working in these vineyards alongside his father.
The first Kilikanoon branded wines from the 1997 vintage were four single vineyard wines, each from Kevin and Mort's vineyards. These were the 'Oracle' Shiraz, 'Prodigal' Grenache, 'Blocks Road' Cabernet and 'Mort's Block' Watervale Riesling.
Kilikanoon's expansion has been made possible by invaluable partnerships, together with the acquisition of, and access to, outstanding vineyards in the most esteemed grape growing regions in South Australia, including the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale. From humble beginnings with just 25,000 bottles produced from the first vintage, Kilikanoon has grown significantly, now exporting to over 25 countries.
Kilikanoon has been recognised both in Australia and internationally, receiving high praise from some of the world's most respected wine critics. The 2002 Clare Valley Wine Show chaired by prominent Australian wine writer and judge, Huon Hooke, propelled Kilikanoon into the spotlight, winning 6 of the 7 trophies awarded. Going from strength to strength, the Oracle Shiraz twice won 'Best Shiraz' at International wine shows and Halliday's Wine Companion named Kilikanoon 'Winery of the Year' in 2013. In 2014, Kevin Mitchell was inducted into the inaugural Clare Valley Hall of Fame as Winemaker of the Year.
South Australian is responsible for more than half the production of all Australian wine. It is home to more than 900 wineries across 18 wine regions. The regions are Adelaide Hills, Adelaide Plains, Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, Coonawarra, Currency Creek, Eden Valley, Kangaroo Island, Langhorne Creek, McLaren Vale, Mount Benson, Mount Gambier, Padthaway, Riverland, Robe, Southern Fleurieu, Southern Flinders Ranges and Wrattonbully.
Many of the well-known names in the South Australian wine industry established their first vineyards in the late 1830s and early 1840s. The first vines in McLaren Vale were planted at Reynella in 1839 and Penfold's established Magill Estate on the outskirts of Adelaide in 1844.
South Australia has a vast diversity in geography and climate which allows the State to be able to produce a range of grape varieties - from cool climate Riesling in the Clare and Eden Vallies to the big, full bodied Shiraz wines of the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale. Two of Australia's best-known wines, Penfolds Grange and Henschke Hill of Grace, are produced here. There is much to discover in South Australia for the wine lover.