What They Say

96 Points James Halliday Wine Companion 2017

His review said:

“This has utterly convincing varietal character, spiced black cherries allied with touches of charcuterie, the texture/ mouthfeel with enough complexity to take it into the top echelon.”

The Wine Front – Riposte The Scimitar Riesling 2016

A Scimitar is a wide, curved blade … for slashing rather than for stabbing. It fits with the Sabre/Riposte theme. This is riesling from the famed Watervale sub-region.

It’s dry and pristine. Beautifully so. Lime, florals, a gentle slateyness. Excellent intensity and length. Right on the money. Exactly as you’d like it.

Rated : 93 Points
Tasted : Jun16
Alcohol : 11.5%
Price : $20
Closure : Screwcap
Drink : 2016 – 2026+

This was re-posted from the original review by The Wine Front.

Riposte, The Dagger Pinot Noir 2014, Australia, wine review

Every Sunday Tom Cannavan of wine-pages.com chooses a new wine of the week. For 6th March 2016 the Riposte, The Dagger Pinot Noir 2014, from Australia is his Wine of the Week.

James Halliday top 100 Reds Under $20

Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir 2015

94 Points
Full crimson-purple hue; a fine web of earth and spice is wound through the dark cherry and damson plum fruit of both the bouquet and palate, providing an extra measure of texture and structure.
Still in its infancy, but promises much for the future – and at an enticing price.

Highest pointed  of only two Pinot Noir’s priced under $20.

2015 Winewise Small Vignerons Wine Show

Riposte 2015 Sauvignon Blanc – Gold

2015 Riposte The Foil Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc The aromatics tend to passionfruit in this very lively, textural sauvignon blanc which is packed with varietal flavour. oak. Satisfaction guaranteed by a plush, medium-bodied palate. ★★★★☆

Riposte 2013 Cutlass Shiraz – Gold

2013 Riposte The Cutlass Adelaide Hills Shiraz The dark berry aromas and flavours are enhanced by well judged use of oak. Satisfaction guaranteed by a plush, medium-bodied palate. ★★★★☆

The Wine Selector Golden Bottles – Best Male Wine Maker

Tim Knappstein
Riposte by Tim Knappstein


Matthew Jukes Top 100 Australian Wines 2014/15

View the full list here: http://www.matthewjukes.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Matthew-Jukes-100-Best-2014-15.pdf

2013 Riposte by Tim Knappstein, The Stiletto Pinot Gris, Adelaide Hills, SA £16

With over 9 million Daily Mail readers a week, Matthew has the most keenly followed wine column in the UK. He also writes a weekly piece for MoneyWeek and occasional articles for The Week.

Matthew was made Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK in 2012 by the Australia Day Foundation. He was also voted the most influential wine writer in the UK by OLN in 2011 and he was also presented with the Journalism Award at the Portuguese Wine Awards in March 2013 and the English Wine Producers Communicator Award in July 2103.

Tim Knappstein’s portfolio is always in with a shout in 100 Best. He is an intuitive winemaker with a stunning grasp of the illusive Pinot Noir variety and his 2012 Riposte The Sabre Pinot Noir is ‘Morey-Saint-Denis-like’ with dark, beetrooty, earthy notes under the glorious plum and damson fruit. It is quite stunning and with a shorter Pinot brigade in this year’s list than normal it really should be the 101 Best this year – would anyone have noticed?! Anyway, this wine was nudged brusquely aside by The Stiletto not least because epic PGs are thin on the ground and this is a cosmic creation. The recipe is a quarter barrel and a quarter malo and this lends the ginger and greengage-snogged fruit a tenderness and slipperiness which teases the palate and makes it hard to pigeonhole – remember uniqueness is all in this modern wine world. There is impressive freshness here counterpointed by creaminess and depth. At no stage does it tip into chubbiness. This is yet another awe-inspiring wine from Riposte.

The Weekend Australian 26 April 2014
Wine – James Halliday
Tim Knappstein and the wines of Riposte

Value for money: Riposte Wines


TIM Knappstein and I are old wine dogs, our wine lives starting in the late 1960s and intersecting at similar times along the way.

In 1978 we (independently) discovered the Yarra Valley, and its cool-climate ability to make great pinot noir and chardonnay. Between 1981 and 1985 we variously moved to cool regions to live and plant vineyards (he to Lenswood, high in the Adelaide Hills, I to the Yarra Valley to establish Coldstream Hills). Knappstein’s winery is now called Riposte, a long story of battles lying behind that name, and while pinot noir is one of his fortes, Riposte is far from a one-trick pony. So is Coldstream Hills, its chardonnays these days winning more important wine show trophies than its pinot noir.

It is with pinot noir that the two old wine dogs have divergent views, although I have to spoil a good story by acknowledging that the divergence exists in Burgundy as much as it does in Australia and other top pinot-producing countries. It might seem a minor matter but the question is whether the inclusion of stalks (as part of whole bunches) in the ferment is a good thing (my view) or a bad thing (Knappstein’s view).

When I asked him for a few pungent words to be quoted in this article, he was only too happy to oblige. “I like pinot noir to taste like fruit, not the forest floor. And as the wine ages, the earthy/stalky characters increase as the fruit flavours diminish.”

My response is that I don’t want a pinot to taste like Beaujolais, simple and fruity. I want structure that can’t easily be obtained from fruit alone, even though I agree the inclusion of stalks decreases the potential colour intensity and can lift the pH, hastening the ageing process.

And, just to be trite, I point to the greatest of all Burgundies, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, where more often than not 100% whole bunches are used.

Riposte The Sabre Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2012
Small batches, cold-soaked, hand-plunged in open fermenters; matured for 10 months in French barriques (25% new), grapes from Lenswood/Piccadilly Valley. Vivid, clear crimson-purple colour heralds a pinot of grace and purity, red and black cherry on a carpet of spice, gossamer tannins and quality oak. 13.5% alc; screwcap.
97 points; drink to 2022; $35

Riposte The Dagger Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir 2013
Grapes from Charleston and Gumeracha; early-drinking style. Excellent crimson colour; fragrant, floral bouquet on bright red cherry and spice aromas, the balanced palate reinforcing red berry fruits courtesy of persistent but supple tannins. Oak is a bystander. Outrageous value. 13.5% alc; screwcap.
95 points; drink to 2018; $20

Riposte The Rapier Adelaide Hills Gewürztraminer 2012
Single vineyard wine from Lenswood; grapes crushed and pressed, pressings fermented in used French oak, main body of juice settled and cold-fermented in stainless steel. Rose petal and lychee aromas and flavours are a given; excellent length and balance. 13.5% alc; screwcap.
93 points; drink to 2018; $20

You can read the original article from the Weekend Australian by clicking here >

Winewise Awards – 2012 Riposte The Sabre Pinot Noir

Pinot noir is small maker territory, and this is one of the highlight varieties of the Awards. The number of gold medals testifies to the quality being achieved by dedicated producers.

Tim Knappstein followed up his triumph in the 2013 Winewise Championship with a gold medal for the 2010 Riposte and a trophy for the 2012. Congratulations to Home Hill and Montalto for three gold medals each with cutting-edge wines. Outstanding

You can view the full Press Release here >

‘The prices for almost all of the wines are astonishingly low’ – James Halliday

Riposte has been awarded the much coveted five red stars in James Halliday’s 2014 Wine Companion.

As explained in the Companion “ Outstanding winery regularly producing wines of exemplary quality and typicity.”

You can view the full Press Release in our News section >

The 2013 Winewise Championship – Pinot Noir

Some readers may expect more entries in a prestigious class like pinot noir, but, when you think about it there aren’t a lot of shows where pinot noirs fare well. The Burgundy red varietal simply isn’t ubiquitous like shiraz. The fourteen that fought out this year’s medallion represented the Adelaide Hills, northern and southern Tasmania, NSW Southern Highlands, Mornington Peninsula and the Bellarine Peninsula.

2010 Riposte The Sabre Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir Tim Knappstein’s Riposte pinots have consistently shown well in our tastings, and it was good to see that support continue when our guest panel members joined us. The Riposte narrowly reversed the decision of the Adelaide Hills Wine Show where the Shaw + Smith edged it out for the trophy. Its fragrance and opulent dark cherry palate won favour with the judges, as did the fine, firm tannins which provide balance and encourage cellaring. There are some ideal, cool pinot sites in the mosaic that is the Adelaide Hills, and perhaps a little too much media attention is focused on Victoria, particularly some small “cult” makers who are inconsistent at best. ($30.00) Outstanding

View the full article >

Huon Hooke – 10 things you should know about wine

We believe this is one of the best summaries of what good wine is all about, the original article can be found here: http://huonhooke.tumblr.com/post/34784169285/10-things-you-should-know-about-wine

  1. Trust your own judgment.
    Your own taste is more important than other people’s. There’s no point buying wine that’s festooned with medal stickers, which all the critics rave about, if you don’t like it.
  2. People’s palates are like finger-prints.
    Everyone’s is slightly different, and no-one but you knows whether you will like a wine, or how much you’ll like it. Refuse to be brow-beaten by wine-bores. (There’s one at every dinner party.)
  3. Wine’s true place is at the dinner table.
    The best wines go beautifully with food: as Pasteur said, a meal without wine is like a day without sunshine. Conversely, wine without food is only part of the experience. The two enhance each other. But don’t be too fussy about wine and food matching: if you are served solids and liquids that don’t go well together, it’s simple enough to consume them separately!
  4. Don’t wait too long to open special bottles.
    Many people wait for the special occasion to open a treasured bottle, and that occasion never seems to come. A cellar is only as good as the best bottle you are prepared to open. If you want to use that ‘71 Grange (tasting notes) you’ve coddled for decades, create a special occasion to drink it with friends. The last thing you should do is send it to auction: why give up pleasure for a few dollars?
  5. Don’t cellar top wine for a long period without proper temperature control.
    Australia is a hot country and a lot of superb wine is ruined this way. It is always better do drink a wine a little too young than risk waiting until it’s a little too old.
  6. When stocking your cellar, always spend at least as much as you can afford.
    Otherwise you’ll end up with lots of stuff you’ll never want to drink. One of my favourite sayings is ‘Great wine is seldom too expensive; bad wine always is’. Those who say they cannot afford to drink their most valuable bottles are being foolish.
  7. Australian wine is underrated.
    Reputations are built slowly, and can be lost quickly. Australia will always be playing catch-up to France, Italy, Germany etc, because they were there long before us. We are paying dearly for having shipped a lot of ordinary wine to the world, and for excessive discounting in the UK, both of which hurt our reputation.
  8. Wine is a very natural beverage.
    It is basically just fermented grapejuice. Most of the additives permitted in wine already occur naturally in grapes – such as yeast, acids, tannins, sugars (not cane sugar; I’m thinking grapejuice concentrate) and even sulphur dioxide. Those that don’t occur naturally in wine are mostly processing agents, such as eggwhites and bentonite – which is a clay – and they don’t remain part of the wine. The so-called ‘natural’ wine movement is very naughty to encourage an impression that most wine is unnatural.
  9. Wine is a mirror to nature.
    When made honestly and without too much human manipulation, it reflects the place where the grapes were grown. The vineyard site (specifically, its land and climate) shapes the wine’s personality and in the best examples, imparts uniqueness.
  10. The rarest great wines are absurdly expensive.
    They are only likely to become moreso, because their supply is limited and the market for them keeps growing. But the good news is that there is more good wine today than ever before. And there’s better value for money than ever.

Adelaide Hill Magazine – Spring 2011

Adelaide Hills Magazine Riposte Feature

Riposte was recently featured in the Adelaide Hills Magazine. Click on the image above for a larger view.

James Halliday's Top 100

FOR the wines in this category in particular, the wet and cool 2011 vintage in eastern Australia came as a welcome surprise. 294 wines submitted; 52 shortlisted; 20 selected.

Whites under $20 – Riposte The Stiletto Pinot Gris  2011

”The bouquet is far more expressive than most, with pear, orange zest and lime pith, and the zesty palate fulfils all the promise of the bouquet.  A rare beast is a pinot gris with a degree of varietal expression.”

Matthew Jukes – 100 Best Australian Wines list for 2011

Matthew Jukes is wine correspondent of the Daily Mail and is read each week by over 9 million readers.

As always, this century of greats is the result of exhaustive tastings over the last twelve months and it represents the finest one hundred Australian wines available on the shelves in the UK this year.

2010 Riposte by Tim Knappstein, The Dagger Pinot Noir, Adelaide Hills, SA £14

I am a massive fan of 2008 The Sabre Pinot Noir from Tim’s cellar and it would have waltzed its way into this list were it not for the deft skills of 2010 The Dagger.

Forward drinking, unapologetically youthful and desperately dashing, d’Artagnan himself must surely be the model for this flashing blade. Every bloke needs a bottle of this in his briefcase for emergency purposes.

Winewise – Lester Jesberg October 2010 – Discovery

2010  Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir

For years I’ve wondered why Australian producers had put so little effort into producing a high quality, early-drinking pinot noir. Pinot is ideally suited to that style because of its fragrance and suppleness.  Tim Knappstein was obviously thinking along the same lines, because he’s produced a delicious, cherry-scented pinot noir that has the fruit weight and silky feel of a top line Fleurie Beaujolais. The fruit is allowed to express itself, with no interference from oak, and that is one of the keys to a style like this.  Well done Tim.  Highly recommended LJ

James Halliday – Australian Wine Companion

2010  Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir

Deep, bright crimson-purple; ripe, plum and dark cherry aromas presage a substantial palate with abundant fruit rounded off with some fine tannins on t he finish. Screwcap.

13.5% alc. Rating 92 Drink 2015 Date Tasted Nov 10

Rating: 90-93 (4 out of 5 glasses)
Highly recommended. Wines of great quality, style and character, worthy of a place in any cellar.

Eatanddrink.com.au – Christopher Hayes

2010 Riposte ‘The Dagger’ Pinot Noir

In his excellent book The future makers, Max Allen writes of “everyday pinot noirs … letting the simple but delicious flavours of the grape speak for themselves”. A couple of hours after reading that I could not have had a better example in this juicy, fleshy, raspberry & plum scented pinot from the Adelaide Hills. Stylistically this speaks to me of cru Beaujolais (of which I admit to being a fan) with oodles of charm but more than enough character to be taken seriously; with length on the palate, and fine tannins and acidity balancing the fruit. And about half the price of the comparable Beaujolais.

Huon Hooke – Sydney Morning Herald Nov 2010 Top 50 Summer Wines

2010 Riposte ‘The Dagger’ Pinot Noir

A very young, fresh, fruity early release  that offers good drinking at modest prices.

Rating 90/100

Chris Shannahan Review – chrisshanahan.com on 22 Dec 2010

2010 Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir

This is the youngest and simplest of three very good pinots I have recommended as medium-bodied company for your Christmas lunch — each a step up in quality from the other. Despite the modest (for pinot) price ($20), The Dagger, made by Tim Knappstein, pushes most of the pinot buttons, relying on good fruit rather than winemaker artifice to do the job. We might expect a fruit festival from such a youngster. But it’s richly textured, savoury and has the backbone of a good pinot. Cellaring? No need; lap it up now.

Wine Talking by Paddy Kendler

2010 Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir

The Dagger: Best under $20 Pinot Noir in Australia, if not the world!

Australian House and Garden Feb 2011

On the House by sommelier Toni Paterson

“If you serve a lot of ocean trout and salmon, keep a light red on hand; I like the 2010 Riposte The Dagger Pinot Noir.”

Winewise, The Consumer’s Wine Guide: Oct 2010, Vol 20 Number 4

2010 Riposte ‘The Foil’ Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc

A fresh, ripe, grassy, gooseberry style which is attractively full and textural.

Excellent drinking

2009 Riposte ‘The Sabre’ Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir

A vibrant cherry/raspberry style which is quite firm at the moment but has length and intensity.

Excellent value

Included in Winewise Half Dozen

2010 Riposte ‘The Stiletto’ Pinot Gris

Made from top Adelaide Hills material, this wine has pronounced poached pear varietal characteristics and good resh fruit with texture

Wine review by Tony Love – Advertiser 19 Jan 2011

2009 Riposte The Sabre Pinot Noir

From the winner of the Adelaide Hills Wine Show’s best pinot (with the Sabre 2009 version), this is a different style created by Tim Knappstein and designed to be drunk young.  There are vibrant, light crimson colours, earthy cherry and plum fruit smells and good minerally bite that flows generously into the mouth. An excellent mid-summer red able to work all night on the breezy balcony.

Ralphy Kyte-Powell – Epicure 1st February 2011

2009 Riposte The Sabre Pinot Noir

5 Stars

This expressive Adelaide Hills pinot noir, opens with a floral touch and dark cherry, raspberry and gently spicy aromas.  It’s fragrant and fruity, wit toasty oak framing the fruit.  The silky palate has sustained elegant flavour and a long, gentle finish.

Winewise – Lester Jesberg October 2010

2010 Riposte The Foil Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc

A fresh, ripe, grassy, gooseberry style which is attractively full and textural.
Excellent drinking

Nick Stock, Good Wine Guide 2011

2010 Riposte ‘The Foil’ Sauvignon Blanc

93 Points – “Seriously great wines with all aspects of style and quality in top form.  Well ahead of the pack.”

“A fresh and lively sauvignon from one of the Hills’ masters, this has a composed amalgam of passionfruit, gooseberry, some sweet fresh herbs, grassy notes and citrus. The palate’s taught and savoury, with the latter setting it apart from the majority of others in this style.”

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