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Rheinhessen and Nahe 2015: Cool Concentration from a “Warm Vintage”

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Nov 2017

Given the potential afforded by a cool, clear autumn following on the heels of a hot, dry summer, in conjunction with the exceptional abilities of so many growers, the top 2015s from Nahe and Rheinhessen offer plenty of excitement.

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Vintage Report – 2016 in Germany and Austria

featured, Austria, Germany

David Schildknecht, Sep 2017

The weather extremes experienced in so many recent vintages have been accompanied increasingly by years featuring remarkably similar meteorological and growing patterns that stretch from the Mosel to parts of Austria nearly 400 flight miles distant. In the end, ironically, the drama that preceded it led to a 2016 Riesling harvest as stress-free as many Austrian and German growers could recall, and to grapes whose very gradual ripening and modest eventual must weights would have seemed more familiar to growers of the mid-20th century.

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Vintage Preview – 2017 in Austria and Germany

featured, Austria, Germany

David Schildknecht, Sep 2017

It seems as though the climatic changes that help explain so many 21st century Riesling growing seasons of unprecedented extremes in weather are having this additional effect: For the third year in a row, in 2017 one can characterize the growing season for Riesling in Bernkastel on the Mosel in very similar terms to that in Krems on the Danube, exactly 400 crow-flying miles distant.

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2015 Rheingau and Mittelrhein Riesling

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Sep 2017

There is less talent and ambition in the Rheingau and adjacent Mittelrhein than these regions deserve, but 2015 offered an outstanding opportunity for demanding growers to excel.

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2015 Rhine Riesling: No Pfalz Modesty

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Aug 2017

Growers in Germany’s Pfalz picked most of their 2015 Riesling by the end of September, but the results by no means lack ripeness or aromatic finesse. The fact that many a Pfalz collection is not notably superior to its much later-harvested 2014 counterpart should by no means be taken as a sign of weakness. Without question, the aggregate rate of Riesling success in 2014 and 2015 is highest in the Pfalz and Nahe.

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Rieslingfeier – The 2017 Seminars

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Jul 2017

Rieslingfeier is quite literally “a celebration of Riesling.” But the seminars held as part of this year’s event offered tasting and discussion that were thought-provoking – sometimes to the point of head-scratching – and seriously concerned with the future of Riesling on German and Austrian slopes as well as in the North American marketplace.

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Rieslingfeier: A Celebration of Germany’s Greatest Wines

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Jul 2017

An annual “Celebration of Riesling” thrills the converted and inspires them to proselytize on behalf of Germany’s great white grape.

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Mosel 2015: Rain in the Nick of Time

featured, Germany

David Schildknecht, Jun 2017

Seldom has a vintage been better suited for tapping the awesome abundance of talent that has accumulated along the 135 circuitous miles of the Mosel between Trier and Koblenz, where sites and growers are testing one another’s potential with increasingly exciting results.

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Saar and Ruwer 2015: Rain in the Nick of Time

featured, Germany: Ruwer, Germany: Saar

David Schildknecht, May 2017

There are really two 2015 vintages for German Riesling: the first harvest took place on the heels of early September rain, and the second four to eight weeks later during a chilly but sunny autumn. Both will reward Riesling lovers, especially the latter.

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Cellar Favorite: 1999 Schloss Johannisberg Riesling Beerenauslese

Germany, Cellar Favorites

Ian D'Agata, May 2017

I’ve always been a huge fan of Schloss Johannisberg, which won’t surprise any die-hard Riesling lover. After all, Schloss Johannisberg is not just one of the oldest wine estates in the world (the first documented wine harvest took place there in 817 A.D.) and is an absolutely iconic Riesling address.