Written by: Roslyne Buchanan
Double Gold recipient at the 2018 San Francisco International Wine Competition and Silver medalist at the Los Angeles International Wine Packaging Design Competition 2018, Cristal’s Fault Riesling sports a crooked label and a cheeky backstory.
Clues to the reason why this Riesling got its name from a wine filter called Cristal can be pieced together from its label and bottle. “Right away you’ll notice the bottle is blue,” says Teresa Murray, Crescent Hill Winery owner. “In Germany, when you want a glass of Riesling, the bottle tells you where it’s from. The off-dry grape clone used in this is originally from the Rhine River region and the blue bottle represents the authenticity.”
The wine filter, too, was a used, old workhorse brought from Europe by Murray’s father, Glennallyn, and he named it Cristal. Cristal is now roughly 85 years old, and as the story goes, she sprung a leak while the Crescent Hill crew was bottling the Riesling. In the midst of the time-intensive process, two measuring cups were set underneath to capture the escaping elixir. Unable to keep up with the volume of drippage, rumour has it that the team may have started to drink the overflow. It wasn’t until the next day, the crooked labels were noticed.
“So,” winks Teresa. “It wasn’t our fault, it was Cristal’s Fault.”
Since then, a cheeky illustration was designed by talented artist Janis Blyth to hint at how things got out of kilter. The label features a tipsy and provocative lass on the floor with keys to the jail dangling from her toes. Beside her is an overturned wineglass, measuring cup and the black pug, Tulip, whose collar states “detained.” In the clasps for the lass’s pigtails, you’ll find the ‘C’ and the ‘H’ of Crescent Hill.
All kidding aside, this off-dry Riesling is “aromatic and offers honey top notes with tastes of nectarine, apricot and crisp apples.” Boasting a strong mineral base with a surprising key lime finish, this delicate and refreshing Riesling is great to sip on its own or with seafood. The back of bottle label notes: “What a delight to drink this off-dry original clone from the Rhine River, just ask…we know!…The Crew. This wine pairs well with spicy foods and kool friends.”
To taste Cristal’s Fault and learn more about its backstory and other enchanting tales of Crescent Hill, visit the tasting room. Hours are Monday to Saturday, 10 am to 7 pm, and Sunday, 11 am to 8 pm. For information on the selection of wines and corresponding awards, see crescenthillwinery.com.