Browse Tag


Left in the Lorch

[vineyard]Kesseler 2004 Lorcher Schlossberg Riesling Kabinett 009 05 (Rheingau) – Open and taking huge, lung-filling breaths of reflective, almost transparent minerality. It’s not a big wine, though it’s insistent, with various apples cut by nut skins and then, later, softened by a certain roundness to the acidity. Interesting. (4/09)

The perfect club

Kesseler 2005 White 001 06 (Rheingau) – 70% sylvaner, 30% riesling. Less (appealingly) vegetal than many examples of the grape, with a little bit of a sharp edge that may be from the riesling, but retaining the clingier texture of the majority partner. There’s a bit of welcome rockiness, as well. A good value, though I think similarly-priced pure rieslings are a little more defined. (4/09)

Rottland hum

Leitz 2007 Rüdesheimer Berg Rottland Riesling Spätlese Trocken “Alte Reben” (Goldkapsel) 014 08 (Rheingau) – Tastes Austrian, in a diffident sort of way. Not particularly precise, but instead rather creamy, with intensity and power both present and in reserve. A solid block of riesling. Let it age. (12/08)

Georgetown, BC, St. Joe’s…

[label]Spreitzer 2007 Winkeler Jesuitengarten Riesling Spätlese 025 08 (Rheingau) – Light petroleum and smoky coal (get some uranium in there, and this wine will have quite the power-generating capacity), plus sweet banana. Ripe, with great acidity (thankfully, since the wine is very sweet). The finish sorta lingers, but doesn’t really develop. Still, there’s a lot to like here. (12/08)

Bury your head

[label]Spreitzer 2007 Oestricher Lenchen Riesling Kabinett 028 08 (Rheingau) – Tropical (guava, mango) and floral, counterpointed by a slightly sour yogurt aroma. Fair acidity. This wine makes a big, attention-getting announcement of its presence, but doesn’t really follow through on the trumpeting. It’s good, though, and the finish lingers for a little while. (12/08)

Maxed out

Kesseler 2002 Spätburgunder “Cuvée Max” (Rheingau) – Dill and wood, beet and cherry. Simple and too intense; it’s striking, but that’s all. Disappointing. (2/08)

Vait a Weil

Weil 2005 “Estate” Dry Riesling (Rheingau) – Very concentrated, intense, aggressive, and dry at the finish. Slate and paper. (2/07)

TN: Over low heat

[Nußbrunnen]von Simmern 2004 Hattenheimer Nußbrunnen Riesling Kabinett 009 05 (Rheingau) – Granitic strawberry and pleasant, light-minded sweetness bring initial pleasure…but then the wine starts to unravel, leaving these elements disintegrated and uncooperative. I’m not sure what’s going on here, but I expect a little more from this producer. (12/06)

TN: Still more old notes

Gysler “Bundle of Scheu” 23 04 (Rheinhessen) – Off-dry dandelion pollen and other floral, leafy stuff of much unthinking goodness. (8/06)

Huet 2000 Vouvray Brut Pétillant (Loire) – Waxy and acidic with the faintest suggestion of bubbles, but otherwise giving up absolutely nothing. This is about as closed as a wine can be. (8/06)

Rodez Champagne Ambonnay “Grand Cru” Brut Blanc de Noirs (Champagne) – Soft strawberry and red cherry. The fruit is concentrated and almost liqueur-like, with sweet tones on the finish, and the overall impression is one of plushness. I’m not sure that’s an admirable quality here. (8/06)

Johannishof 2005 Johannisberg “G” Riesling Kabinett 010 06 (Rheingau) – Mixed heirloom apples dusted with nutmeg and ripe with piercing sweetness, turning quickly to overwhelming red fruit on the palate. There’s molten iron and a good deal of spice that emerges with air…as the wine gets redder and redder with each sip. Powerful stuff, though it bears about as much resemblance to a kabinett as does a Barossa shiraz. (8/06)

Lopez de Heredia “Viña Tondonia” 1989 Rioja Reserva “Viña Gravonia” (Center-North) – Dry toast with spiced butter and preserved lemon spread, dotted by buttered marshmallows. Long, with fine acidity and a drying element on the finish that eventually becomes a slight burn. Controversial, and though I finally decide that I like it, it’s definitely not for everyone. (8/06)

Trimbach 2000 Riesling “Cuvée Frédéric Émile” (Alsace) – Absolutely impenetrable, though it gives the impression of being nothing more than liquid minerality. Not even worth taking a peek at right now, but it should be much, much better in a half-dozen years. (8/06)

Mann 1998 Riesling Schlossberg (Alsace) – Intense, ripe and very dry banana skin shoved through a metal cylinder. It grows to an early climax, then quickly fades away, and the finish is surprisingly short. But from a site where most producers pursue some level of residual sugar, this wine is dry, dry, dry. (8/06)

Boxler 2000 Riesling Sommerberg “L31D” (Alsace) – Light sweetness…for Boxler, that is…backed by such terrific acidity that it really doesn’t register after the first sip. Otherwise, there’s a brilliantly-structured wine running the mineral gamut from coal to diamond, with ripe red apple and strawberry blossom. An extremely vertical riesling, with power and presence and many, many fantastic years ahead of it. (8/06)