Browse Tag


Worm d’or

[vineyard]Vollenweider 2008 Wolfer Goldgrube Riesling Spätlese “Goldkapsel” 05 09 (Mosel) – Very ripe. Very, very ripe. Very, very, very…oh, hell, you know where I’m going with this. But it is…ripe, I mean…though there’s a flood of acidity to match it, and it actually manages a fierce, fisticuffs-in-lava sort of balance. Apples? Sure, why not? Mineral-grayed coarse sea salt as well. Fascinating. And very young. Very, very young. Very, very, very… (1/10)

Do you Graach?

[vineyard]von Kesselstatt 2007 Graach Josephshöfer Riesling Spätlese 15 08 (Mosel) – I miss the days when a spätlese was a medium-weight wine. This is a bruiser, and though along with its full metal jacketed weight comes vibrant structure that carries that weight, it’s a very muscular wine. Green apple granite and dripping molten iron sundae topping. Age will definitely not hurt this wine. (1/10)

Dhron & quartered

[grapes]AJ Adam 2008 Dhron Hofberg Riesling Spätlese 04 09 (Mosel) – Light salt, white pepper, and very fruity pineapple, elevated with power and vibrancy. Very self-confident. (12/09)

Finkenauer, or two if you need them

Finkenauer 2005 Kreuznacher Osterhölt Riesling Spätlese Semi-Dry 18 06 (Nahe) – Straining and stretching, seemingly forcing itself into a misty, photo-negative role it’s not quite built for. Its minerality is worn on the exterior, the apple skin and gale-force winds that comprise the wine’s “fruit” are in the interior. This is a reversal of riesling’s usual form, and while it’s interesting, I’m not sure it’s to the wine’s benefit. Emphasis, in that last sentence, on the “not sure”; I’m more than a little uncertain about how to assess this wine? Good? Trying to hard? I dunno. (10/09)

Wehl, en, let’s take a look

[vineyard]Studert-Prüm 2006 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese 2 07 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Sweet flowers made of metal and cold sunshine, but it’s the steel that’s growing ever more dominant in this wine, which is insistent and powerful despite the apparent lightness of its carriage. It’s still difficult for me to accept that this is the weight one must expect from a Spätlese, but I guess that’s the modern paradigm. Drink very soon, or let it age. (8/09)

Catch hheck

Dönnhoff 2001 Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese 006 02 (Nahe) – Fairly creamy (already, which is pretty common for Dönnhoff), ranging from slightly underripe stone fruit to a salt-sugar mix that slightly muddles the structure, though I can’t say that the wine really suffers much as a result. Not an intellectual wine, but not really an emotional one either; mostly, it’s about overt and superior pleasantness. (7/09)

Angela J.S.S.

Merkelbach 2001 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Spätlese 012 02 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Wine turned up past ten on the volume control, but here it’s not a bad thing. Green herbs and ultra-ripe apple, with metal in abundance. Still very, very young. (4/09)

Brücke Shields

Dönnhoff 2007 Oberhäuser Brücke Riesling Spätlese 07 08 (Nahe) – Soft and creamy, with tangerine. Pulsating. The full, rich texture isn’t really offset by anything else, to the point where it becomes worrisomely plush. (4/09)


[winery]CH Berres 1998 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Spätlese 06 99 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Faint at first, but it grows into itself a bit. Yet it never quite reaches the rung it should grasp, remaining dusty and drying, despite good length. There’s a lack of presence, and also of the texture and mineral-spice of older riesling. A closed stage, then? Perhaps. (9/08)

Haus of walls

Schloss Wallhausen 2005 Riesling Spätlese 14 06 (Nahe) – Perfectly correct German riesling…acid, sugar, and lemon-apple fruit all intact…with nothing that adds to, or detracts from, the basic fact of it. (4/09)