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Announcement: tasting notes have permanently migrated elsewhere. This page and its sub-network will stand for a while, and will always be Google-accessible, but that's where the new action is and will be.

(NB: For purely arbitrary reasons, an auslese will be found amidst the regular whites, while a beerenauslese, trockenbeerenauslese or eiswein will be listed as sweet wine.)

s p a r k l i n g

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

von Schubert’schen Schlosskellerei “Maximin Grünhäuser” 2001 Riesling Sekt Brut 35 04 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Sharp iron and aluminum filings with loads of desert-like tartaric acid and dry white pepper. Extremely dry. (4/06)

w h i t e

Benedict Loosen-Erben 1990 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Spätlese *** 003 92 (Mose-Saar-Ruwer) – Still strong, showing sugar over old waffles, plus ripe apple lending a bit of lift. (6/07)

Karlsmühle 2002 Lorenzhöfer Riesling Auslese 15 03 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Extreme intensity in liquid form. Very sweet, dominated by pineapple, but just way too forceful to really enjoy right now. Revisit in a decade, at the earliest. (6/07)

Zilliken 2002 Saarburger Rausch Riesling Auslese 5 03 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Sulfurous, with great acidity buoying graceful lavender notes. However, the palate is absent and the finish is shockingly abrupt. A sulfur artifact? Or mild TCA? Hard to tell in this setting. (6/07)

Dönnhoff 2001 Oberhäuser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett 004 02 (Nahe) – Ripe apple with some steel. Simple and tart on the finish. This seems to be eroding rather than aging, as predicted by many…as if a protective layer of pleasure were being sand-etched from an archeaological structure. (6/07)

Darting 2005 Dürkheimer Steinberg Muskateller Kabinett Trocken 008 06 (Pfalz) – Floral, showing lime rind and white pepper. It’s on the short side, and perhaps a touch green, but it’s nice. I think being surrounded by bigger wines does some organoleptic violence here. (6/07)

Kerpen 1995 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese *** 18 96 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Amazingly balanced, with huge acidity and somewhat developed creaminess, yet still with time left (indicated by tart remnants of lemon rind squeezed over rocks). It’s sweet, to be sure, but the acid is such that everything seems better-knit than it might. (6/07)

Dönnhoff 2005 Oberhäuser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett (Nahe) – Fresh, vivid peach and citrus with a squeezed stone liquidity, fairly intense sweetness, and an acidic structure that’s struggling a bit beneath the competing elements. This looks to have a good life ahead of it, but it’s predictably straightforward now. (5/07)

Diel 1998 Dorsheimer Burgberg Riesling Kabinett (Nahe) – Apple core and molten aluminum, well-salted aged riesling creaminess, and a woven texture. This is in a beautiful place right now, and I see little reason to hold it. (5/07)

Diel 1997 Dorsheimer Burgberg Riesling Kabinett (Nahe) – Creamier and heavier than the ’98, showing more obvious, round stone fruit popsicle, a polished mouthfeel, and a moderate amount of finishing oil. It could go longer, but the acid is a little deficient…though not unpleasantly so.(5/07)

Hexamer 2005 Schlossböckelheimer In Den Felsen Riesling Spätlese 008 06 (Nahe) – Vivid and somewhat aggressive, with a rounded hammer of ripe apple sheathed in velvet. There’s structure here, but this wine is dominated by its fruit, and it’s a bit on the obvious side. In any case, aging won’t hurt. (5/07)

JJ Prüm 1997 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese 9 98 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Finally open for business, though it’s still a baby. The sulfur has dissipated, leaving an intense, satiny ball of electric creamfruit and threaded steel. There’s just enough acidity to balance matters. An infant beauty. (5/07)

JJ Prüm 1997 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese 9 98 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Under a cork on the verge of structural failure, and the wine shows more advanced, mildly oxidative tremors underneath its full-bodied weight. Organoleptically, the wine is as noted above, but this bottle has seen a little damage. (5/07)

Willi Schaefer 2004 Riesling 01 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Simple, showing pith and lemongrass with a faint, edge-of-the-palate sweetness. There’s not much more to be said about this wine, really. (4/07)

Selbach-Oster 2001 Zeltinger Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett 17 02 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Light lemon curd and ripe Granny Smith apple. There’s emergent creaminess – a sign of maturity – with good balance, and while everything’s very intense right now (an artifact of the vintage), it’s a fine time to start drinking this wine. (3/07)

Müller-Catoir 1998 Haardter Mandelring Scheurebe Spätlese 21 99, fuder 9830 (Pfalz) – Thyme, cat pee, asparagus, grass and grapefruit with spicy acidity. Just a year ago, this was tropical and massively sweet. Now? It’s produce aisle soda. (3/07)

Willi Schaefer 2004 Riesling 01 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Silty and lightly sweet, with a prickly light-bodied aspect and a mild finish. Light purity. (3/07)

Willi Schaefer 2004 Riesling 01 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Bound carbon dioxide takes this zippy little number past a light sparkle and well into an aggressive prickle. I love it. As for the rest, there’s rindy citrus (more grapefruit and lemon than orange) and a flaky, chalky minerality, plus nippy acidity. (2/07)

St. Urbans-Hof 2002 Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Riesling Spätlese 034 03 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Restrained, as if seen through thin silk, with weight that’s held back by…something. Mild TCA? Heat damage? There’s no other hint of either. In any case, the wine shows lightly creamy apricot, polished raw iron pellets, and a rounded, sunny aspect. There’s something not right with this bottle. (2/07)

Loosen-Erben 1983 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Auslese *** 007 84 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Creamy, steely and somewhat filmy, with simple, clean old riesling flavors. I think this one is somewhat past its most useful stage of life. Certainly I don’t get much Würzgarten out of it. (2/07)

Van Volxem 2004 Riesling Kanzen Altenberg “Alte Reben” 11 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Smoky quartz and plenty of matchstick with incredible concentration on the midpalate. Really, there’s almost overwhelming concentration on display. And yet, almost bizarrely, the finish is simplistic; not knowing any better, I’d almost guess it was internationalized riesling. Very light sweetness is dominated by a liquid that is more about weight than aroma or texture. I think this has a long future, but right now it’s a little too powerful for it’s own good; it’s very impressive, but somewhat obstinately adolescent. (2/07)

Dönnhoff 1994 Oberhäuser Brücke Riesling Auslese (Nahe) – Long and sharp, showing ripe but almost shockingly crisp apples in the midst of a surprisingly high-acid brew. Little to nothing has softened or creamed here, and the entire package is rather simple and direct. Given the producer and the site, the most likely conclusion is that it just needs more time, though I admit to harboring minority doubts about the wine’s balance. Still, even I’d bet on Dönnhoff before I’d bet on my guesses. (2/07)

Dönnhoff 2002 Riesling 3 03 (Nahe) – Simple, showing apple-dominated acidity and various metals, but in a crude, unhewn form. The acidity and the sugar don’t blend well here, and the wine’s a little strident (it’s not substantial enough to be overbearing). (12/06)

Studert-Prüm 2004 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 13 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Leafy-floral and light, with mineral dust, drying acidity and intense but limited sweetness filling in the corners. It seems a little obvious now, but there’s more delicate complexity here than I think the wine’s callow youth will admit. Let it age a while. (12/06)

Egon Müller 1995 Scharzhofberger Riesling Kabinett 7 96 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Puréed chalky rocks with a creamy silk overlay, showing sharp apple cider on the midpalate, and a gorgeous, clean, (mostly) sugar-resolved finish. Those afraid to hold a kabinett for ten-plus years should pay attention…though it’s true that this never was an ordinary kabinett. (12/06)

Dönnhoff 1995 Oberhäuser Brücke Riesling Spätlese 10 96 (Nahe) – Rich and ripe as these things go, showing salted clementine, grapefruit and tangerine with strongly aromatic white flowers on the finish. I’d say it’s as ready as it’s ever going to be. (12/06)

Vereinigte Hospitien 2005 Scharzhofberger Riesling Spätlese 19 06 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Odd, like an otherwise engaging party guest who occasionally delivers himself of the most off-putting utterances. There’s high-toned, plasticene-synthesized quartz and strident grapefruit zest, yet there’s appealing sugar balanced with the sharp bite of malic acid as well. Perhaps it just needs time to learn some social graces, but I’m not at all pleased with the initial direction of the fruit. (12/06)

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)

Dr. Fischer 2004 Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Kabinett 02 06 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – A kabinett that actually tastes like a kabinett. Maybe a little too much so, as the mildly pleasant apple and light mineral aromas fade into the background at the slightest provocation…a bit of food, an aroma from the kitchen, a passing breeze…. I wonder if the wine might not be very mildly corked, though usually riesling is so transparent to TCA that time would make it obvious, and it never rears its moldy head. (11/06)

Leitz 2004 Rüdesheimer Klosterlay Riesling Kabinett 005 05 (Rheingau) – Big, sweet and fruity, with a steely banana core and sharp acidity underneath. Perhaps not so much of a kabinett, but a good, balanced wine with aging potential. (10/06)

Bollig-Lehnert 2005 Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Riesling Spätlese 05 06 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Sulfur and mint with a faint spritz. Otherwise, it’s somewhat of a dead weight. (10/06)

Valckenberg 2004 Gewürztraminer 07 05 (Pfalz) – Roses with light peach and pear. Fragrant and medium-sweet. Gewurztraminer with training wheels. (10/06)

Karthäuserhof 1992 Eitelsbacher Karthäuserhofberg Riesling Spätlese (auction) 9 93 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Warring between its youthful crispness and its mature creaminess, this is a gorgeous soda of acid-washed quartz and bubbly cocktail lime. Perhaps even a brief shot of gin? Terrific riesling just on the other side of its midlife crisis.(9/06)

Unckrich 2005 Kallstadter Steinacker Grauer Burgunder Spätlese Trocken 013 06 (Pfalz) – Simple, slightly acrid pear squeezings (heavy on the skins) and faded grapefruit/lime soda, with nice acidity and a chalky undertone. It seems interesting at first, but after a while the realization sets in: it’s a little boring if taken in quantity. But “boring” doesn’t mean “bad,” and in fact this wine is tasty enough. (9/06)

Van Volxem 2002 Saar Riesling 01 03 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Gorgeously-textured silk paper with the thinnest possible coating of lime honey and a fine-grained granitic surface. The power is obvious at first, though it does recede at an accelerated pace, and this is not a wine for the long haul. (8/06)

JJ Prüm 1999 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 3 02 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Better than a previous encounter, with an old-riesling cream supported by dusty, post-windstorm summer leaves and a baked, country road strewn with gravel. Still, it’s definitely on the downslope. (8/06)

von Hövel 2005 Scharzhofberg Riesling Kabinett 9 06 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Sweet melon and crisp, ripe engineered apple (by which I mean, one of those Honeycrisp-type breeds) with acidity and intensity, but not much cut or integration. It’s awfully young, so there’s still time, but this seems more a collection of fine ideas than a unified theory. (8/06)

von Simmern 2004 Hattenheimer Nußbrunnen Riesling Kabinett 009 05 (Rheingau) – Sweet-tart key lime and shattered quartz crystal minerality with raw steel and a subdued, but solid, structure hanging out in the background. Promising, though there’s the threat of a heavy metal drone looming in the subaudible. (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)

Müller-Catoir 1996 Mussbacher Eselshaut Rieslaner Spätlese 04 97 (Rheinpfalz) – Clumsy tropical fruit with searing, tongue-scalding acidity. (8/06)

JJ Prüm 1999 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 3 02 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Soft and fully creamed, perhaps overly so, with spicy dust starting to fade away on a dry Sahara wind. (8/06)

Vier Jahreszeiten 2004 Dürkheimer Feuerberg Gewürztraminer Kabinett Trocken 055 05 (Pfalz) – Restrained lychee skin, rose petal, and macadamia nut oil with good acidity and the impression (but not the actuality) of sweetness. A light, summery, quaffing-type gewürztraminer…something that’s a lot rarer than one might think. (7/06)

Dr. Fischer 2002 Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Spätlese 1 04 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Strikingly vivid, with piercing acidity slashing through light-infused sweetness and shattering against a molten aluminum core. Still quite primary, but there’s limitless potential here. (7/06)

JJ Christoffel Erben 1998 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Kabinett 04 99 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Creamy lime, lemon curd, and a lovely, soft texture with lingering remnants of spice on the finish…which is brightened by crisp apple shavings and nice acidity. Perfectly mature. (7/06)

Dönnhoff 1999 Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Auslese 19 99 (Nahe) – From 375 ml, and now open for three days. It’s still flawless, now showing molten metals at the heart of the sun (if Pink Floyd will excuse the literary license). A truly stunning wine. (4/06)

Dönnhoff 1999 Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Auslese 19 99 (Nahe) – From 375 ml. Long crystalline quartz, pulsing with energy and intensity. There’s candied tangerine rind, needle-sharp acidity, and massive yet well-integrated sweetness, but what’s most unbelievable about this wine is the length. Stunning, awe-inspiring wine. (4/06)

Schaefer 1999 Graacher Domprobst Riesling Spätlese 17 00 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Quite sweet and possessing the texture of liquid glass, with ripe, sweet crabapple and a long, vivid finish. Glows with power, but it’s still fundamentally primary. Let it rest. (4/06)

Gunderloch 2004 “Dry” Riesling 03 05 (Rheinhessen) – Under screwcap. Acidic and very tight, showing some slate and no little sulfur. I feel that this should be more interesting than it is. (4/06)

JJ Prüm 1999 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett 15 00 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Overwhelmingly, undrinkably sulfurous. Holding my nose, I find a bit of minerality just beginning to emerge on the palate, but otherwise, this is like drinking a factory full of matchsticks. (4/06)

Popp 2004 Rödelseer Küchenmeister Silvaner Kabinett Trocken 042 05 (Franken) – Green leaves, light tomato skin and a white pepper-dusted paper finish. Medium-crisp, with drying acidity tending towards the grapefruit part of the citrus spectrum. Enjoyable. (4/06)

Selbach-Oster 2004 Zeltinger Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett Halbtrocken 006 05 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – I somehow got interrupted in my notetaking here. I wrote: vivid and nervy, with dry iron flakes and light hints of fruit, but neglected to draw any conclusions. I seem to remember thinking it was OK. (4/06)

Christoffel 1995 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Auslese *** 12 96 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Intense creamed apple leaf and strawberry bark with fat blood oranges and vivid acidity. Really gorgeous right now, but probably not yet showing everything it has to offer. (4/06)

JJ Christoffel 1995 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Auslese ** 10 96 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Beautiful creamed iron dust and long-decayed pollen with hints of lemon-strawberry custard. Firm and well-structured, very sweet, and lacking just a bit of the edge that would push it into the stratospheric realms of riesling. But it’s still excellent. (12/05)

von Simmern 2002 Hattenheimer Wisselbrunnen Riesling Kabinett 010 03 (Rheingau) – Fresh liquid steel and succulent honeysuckle, quite sweet and ripe (well into spätlese territory, it seems), with a long and lovely balance to the finish. Really beautiful, youthful, and endlessly promising. (12/05)

Wolf 1999 Forster Jesuitgarten Riesling Spätlese Trocken (Rheinpfalz) – I fail to note the AP number here. However, what I’m most concerned with is the residual sugar. Isn’t this supposed to be a trocken? Anyway, it’s slightly creamy, showing fairly simplistic apple flavors and a short finish. I suspect this wine is as developed as it’s ever going to be. (11/05)

Toni Jost 1998 Bacharacher Hahn Riesling Kabinett 06 99 (Mittelrhein) – Who knew Burt had a German wine village named after him? Light petrol and fresh flowers, light with light and some light (it is the overriding impression), sweet Granny Smith apple and great acidity. Did I mention it’s light? (11/05)

JJ Prüm 2001 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Light creaminess mingled with fresh acidity and lightly floral fruit, finally emergent from beneath all that sulfur. A pretty little wine, still primary but growing less so in a measurable way. (11/05)

Rauen 2003 Detzemer Maximiner Klosterlay Riesling Spätlese 11 04 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Very, very sweet, with little acidity and not much else to say. (11/05)

Josef Biffar 2002 Deidesheimer Mäushöhle Riesling Kabinett Trocken #057 03 (Pfalz) – Somewhat stale crispness, light but not lithe, and without much of interest other than a keening mineral-dusted apple note. Just a note, though. Eh. (11/05)

Reinhold Haart 2001 Piesporter Domherr Riesling Auslese #06 02 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Creamed sweet apple and creamed corn (already?), still fairly austere and segregated between its acid/sugar components, but with pretty good balance between those poles. I don’t see a lot of complexity yet, and the creamed corn is a bit early for my taste, but this could be quite good with enough time in the cellar. (11/05)

F. Künstler 1997 Hochheimer Stielweg Riesling Spätlese “Trocken” (18 98) (Rheingau) – Served blind. Mature mushroom, nut, and white cantaloupe with a smooth baked earth character and good acidity. At first it appears on the shortish side, but soon expands into a second act of pineapple and a dry, ultimately quite lengthy finish. Pretty good, but not showing its full hand; whether due to lack of quality or lack of sufficient maturity, I can’t quite tell. Steve Edmunds guesses German, and I halfheartedly agree, but am completely lost beyond that point as to origin, producer, or pradikat.

Mönchhof 1990 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Spätlese (008 91) (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Creamed corn, ripe nectarine and tangerine, big-shouldered with good acidity. Long and lovely, but to be honest a bit monolithic. It’s a niggling criticism, but it’s there. (4/05)

Merkelbach 2002 Ürziger Würzgarten Riesling Spätlese (14 03) (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Diesel and slate with flecks of dried pineapple and a resinous quality, this shows very light sweetness battled-back by huge acidity. The finish is long and drying, and I think this wine will be better in its middle-late years than it is right now; the acid is starting to trample all else. (4/05)

Christoffel 2002 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett (002 03) (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Tarragon, sweet papaya, and mango mixed with big stones, good acidity, and a drying finish. Still awfully primary, it seems, and certainly way, way past “true kabinett.” But…mmmmmm. (4/05)

Schmitges 2003 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett “No. 7” (12 04) (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – The leftovers from last night (below); not an intentional comparison with the above wine, but a fortuitous one. Today, it’s showing ripe pear skin and a little more petroleum, and while it seems better-balanced than the previous evening, it’s still quite sweet. Good, but the same cautions still apply: ware the overt sugar. (4/05)

Schmitges 2003 Erdener Treppchen Riesling Kabinett “No. 7” (12 04) (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Lightish melon drizzled with clover honey, sweetly ripe apple, and a friendly, fruity, low-acid aspect. Decent, and in that context probably very good for 2003, but I probably wouldn’t go long or deep with this wine. (4/05)

JL Wolf 1996 Wachenheimer Gerümpel Riesling Spätlese (8 97) (Pfalz) – Gas-drenched Granny Smith apple, lime juice, and zingy, high-tartness grapefruit with a shorter, lighter finish than one might want. What it possesses in verve it somewhat lacks in oomph. (4/05)

Spreitzer 2002 Oestricher Lenchen Riesling Kabinett (Rheingau) – 8.5% alcohol. Keen-eyed readers will notice that something’s missing here: the AP number. Well, there isn’t one. We search the bottle’s nooks and crannies, and the four of us come up completely empty. Isn’t this illegal? (I'm told, later, by someone in a position to know that it's just exceptionally difficult to see against its background.) Well, anyway, the wine: a piercing quality (“ginger,” opines Christian, and he’s right) with lightly sweet melon, then drying and smoothing into a long, lovely finish. Balanced and quite enticing. (8/04)

J&HA Strub 2002 Niersteiner Paterberg Riesling Spätlese #06 03 (Rheinhessen) – 10% alcohol. Dry, dusty chalkboard and wet grass, apple and green grape, with a very light sweetness stomped to hell by big acidity. Things are fine, they’re just happening too early; let this wine rest, because it’s not in the mood to play nicely with others at the moment. (8/04)

Karsmühle 2002 Riesling Auslese LGK (Rheinhessen) – Here, I noted no AP# because I ordered it by the glass. Even I’m not anal enough to ask the waiter to check. But note the designation. Anyway, this shows lime leaves and tangerine in a thick texture cut up by great acidity. Nonetheless, it’s fairly simple and straightforward, for an auslese. (8/04)

von Simmern 1998 Hattenheimer Nussbrunnen Riesling Kabinett #14 99 (Rheingau) – Stunning sweet apple, lemon, and rich acidity. Still way too young, but wow! (8/04)

von Simmern 1998 Rauenthaler Baiken Riesling Kabinett #15 99 (Rheingau) – Minerals and steel with a bit of petrol and acids set to ultra-dry; wow, double-wow, and perhaps triple-wow! (8/04)

r e d

Heger 2003 Pinot Noir “sonett” 20 05 (Baden) – Strawberry, raspberry and gamay-like sprightliness with a little granite underneath. Like many German pinots, this would be a perfectly lovely wine were it half its actual price. (4/06)

s w e e t

Müller-Catoir 1991 Haardter Herenletten Gewürztraminer Eiswein 12 99 (Rheinpfalz) – Predictably outrageous, showing heavily-spiced mango and quartz-dominated minerality. Flashy and utterly gorgeous, but then I’m a sucker for gewürztraminer with minerality. (6/07)

von Hövel 2003 Oberemmeler Hütte Riesling Eiswein * 12 04 (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) – Butterscotch and vanilla, layered with thick maple syrup. The acidity barely rises to fair, and that only on the finish. Too obvious for my tastes, and I’m not sure time will help matters. (6/07)

Ernst Bretz 1997 Bechtolsheimer Klosterberg Riesling Beerenauslese (Rheinhessen) – I missed the AP here…21 or 27, something like that, according to my nearly-incomprehensible notes. Anyway, this is curvaceous in a slutty, obvious way, with sharp red apple cider and dark brown sugar. Lots of sugar. Lots of sugar. You’ll note that I’m continually mentioning the sugar because there’s just not that much else to say about it. There’s acid, but not enough, and the whole thing’s a little formless. (6/07)

Anheuser 1999 Kreuznacher Krötenpfuhl Riesling Beerenauslese 49 00 (Nahe) – Metal and red cherry, strawberry, raspberry and orange. I’m a sucker for red fruit notes in white wines – most often, chez nous, found in German or Austrian riesling and also in Sancerre – and this is no exception. Extremely sweet, of course, yet everything is in balance. I like it, a lot. (2/07)

Wittmann 1999 Westhofener Steingrube Spätburgunder Beerenauslese 23 00 (Rheinhessen) – Intense to the point of being overwhelming, with grass, red-toned melon, and pomegranate with huge acidity. Bizarre, and I can’t quite decide what to think of it. (8/06)

Köster-Wolf 2002 Scheurebe Alzeyer Römerberg Eiswein (Rheinhessen) – This wine is obviously the product of some sort of accident between several trucks, trains and carts all carrying a variety of tropical fruit, leaving a sticky residue of lime leaves and banana skin. It’s fun, but admits to no further exploration. (4/06)

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