December 8, 2005 - Joanne

The Age of Riesling 11th Year Celebration Tasting

Tasting at Subterraneum - Oakland, CA
Saturday, December 3rd, 2005

Bill Mayer, proprietor of The Age of Riesling, sells, I believe, more Riesling than any retailer in the US. He has no store front, just a warehouse in Richmond, CA (a bit North of Berkeley). But his mailing list consists of German and Austrian wine fans who rely on him to sell them the right wines. He visits Germany and Austria every year, often accompanying Terry Theise (Importer), whose wines he specializes in. Be sure to sign up for his great newsletter.

We tasted all 72 wines. Of note were the 2004 German Rieslings of the Kabinett level. I thought they were particularly strong, indicating to me an overall excellent year for Germany. - Jack



Austria
2004
Alzinger Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Mühlpoint
$29
Okay. Benign drinker.
1+
2004
Alzinger Riesling Smaragd Loibenberg
$58
Slightly overripe fruit center which extends to finish. Really long finish.
2-3+
2004
Bründlmayer Riesling Kamptaler Terrassen
$22
Almost colorless. Citrus notes. Slightly sweet center. Very clean.
2?
2004
Bründlmayer Riesling Steinmassel
$30
Slightly sweet first notes. A little too much ripeness in center but a clean finish.
2+
2003
Glatzer Zweigelt Riedencuvée
$17
Oak and wood fire on nose. Tight center. Interesting.
1?
2004
Glatzer Blaufränkisch Reserve
$23
Berries and wood on nose. Too much oak, like chewing wood chips or eating BBQ charred meat.
 
2004
Gobelsburg Grüner Veltliner Steinsetz
$23
Wild flowers on nose.
2-3+
2004
Gobelsburg Riesling Gaisberg
$32
Really sweet first notes. Still clean with a tart finish.
3
1997
Gobelsburg Riesling Gaisberg
$15
Richer. Rounder center. Almost soft. Slightly bitter finish.
0
2000
Hirtzberger Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Rotes Tor 
$20
Although not oaked, it tastes like oaked sauvignon blanc.
1-2
2004
Jamek Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Stein am Rain
$25
Clean tart slightly acidic center
0-1
2004
Jamek Riesling Federspiel Pichl
$34
Sweet citrus powdery center like sweet-tart candy.
3?
1998
Jamek Riesling Federspiel Pichl

$15

Caramelized Lemons on nose and finish. Sour and tart in center.
0-1
2003
Lehrner St. Laurent
$32
Oak on nose. Vanilla!
 
2004
Mantler Grüner Veltliner Lößterrassen
$21
Awful. Rotten fermenting fruit flavors.
0
1997
Mantler Riesling Wieland
$15
Thin and bitter center. Bitter finish.
1?
2004
Nigl Grüner Veltliner Privat
$45
Sweet tart and slightly bitter. Good!
2-3
2004
Nikolaihof Riesling Federspiel vom Stein
$36
Dry and clean with slight ripeness in center. Clean finish. 
3+
1997
Nikolaihof Riesling Smaragd vom Stein
$25
Soft first notes. Slight sweetness and lemons on center. Bitter finish.
0
2004
Prieler Pinot Blanc Seeberg
$24
Clean nose. Over-ripe yellow fruit center.
2
2004
Salomon Grüner Veltliner Wieden
$17
Slight greenness and tart center.
0
2004
Salomon Riesling Noble Botrytis
$31
Over-ripe apricots on finish.
?
2003
Sattler St Laurent Reserve
$34
Sugar and berries on nose. Vanilla and berries in center. Wood on finish.
 
1999
Schröck BA (375ml)
$40
Intense peach/apricot nose. Essence of toated raisins. Bitter caramel with herbs. Long finish. Cooked apricots/apricot puree on finish.
 
2004
Setzer Grüner Veltliner Eichholz
$26
Sweetness and bitterness with over-ripe peach/apricot finish. Rustic.
0-1
1997
Thiel Rotgipfler Spätlese
$15
Interesting. Slight sweetness.
1+


Germany
2004
Christoffel Estate Riesling $20 Sweet again.
1-2+
2004
Christoffel Erdener Treppchen Kabinett $25 Honey. Good acids. Balanced.
1?
2004
Christoffel Erdener Treppchen Spätlese $28 Not that balanced. Soft center. Over-ripe yellow fruit with a baking bread finish. 
 
2004
Christoffel Ürziger Würzgarten Auslese 1 Star $38 Wow, that’s great! Yum, Really good acids. Not as intense as the Selbach Oster Auslese. Balanced
3+
2004
Christoffel Ürziger Würzgarten Auslese 2 Stars $48 Granny smith/green apple nose. Tastes like a perfect green apple. Slight tart but sweet. Green apple finish.
4+
2004
Darting Dürkheimer Michelsberg Kabinett $17 Honey nose. Floral first notes. Slightly over-ripe fruit center. Some acids on finish.
2-3
2004
Deinhard Scheurebe Kabinett $19 Looks like water. Interesting. Slightly spicy. More pleasant than some. Good finish.
2
2004
Dönnhoff Estate Riesling $21 Sweetness but good acids. Balanced.
1-2
2004
Dönnhoff Schloßböckelheimer Felsenberg Auslese $71 Cloves with green apples on nose. Slight over-ripe on center. Long finish but not enough acids.
3
2004
Dönnhoff Nierhäuser Herrmannshöhle Auslese (375ml.) $58 Very very sweet center. Great acids on finish. Very very balanced.
3+
2004
Eugen Müller Forster Mariengarten Kabinett $17 Good. Sweet.  Good Value.
3?
2004
Geil Rieslaner Spätlese Feinherb $19 Ugh. Bitter. Over-ripe fruit.
0
1999
Grünhaus Abtsberg Auslese $25 *Drink soon. Sauteed/Cooked Peaches/Peach Puree. Rosemary. Exciting.
3+*
2002
Haart Piesporter Goldtröpchen Spätlese  $21 Over-ripe fruit or vegetable finish.
1-3
2002
Haart Piesporter Goldtröpchen Auslese  $28 Rich. Good acids. But short finish. Piesporter that is drinkable and even good!
3?
1999
Heger Ihr. Winklerberg Spätlese trocken  $15 Plastic nose (like a plastic beach ball). Horrible. Chemical.
0
2004
Hexamer Meddersheimer Rheingrafenberg Kabinett $22 Still effervescing. Not too balanced. Ja: Best food wine.
 
2002
Heyl  Niersteiner Brudersberg Spätlese $19 *Drink soon. Doesn’t have great acids. Sweet first notes. Greeness in center. Honey on finish.
2-3*
2004
Jakoby Mathy Kinheimer Rosenberg Kabinett $16 Very sweet first notes. Almost honey with herbs. Some acids on finish. Tasty.
3
2004
Kruger-Rumpf Münsterer Pittersberg Spätlese $26 Balanced – sweet and acids. Less sweet than some of the Kabinetts.
1+
2004
Kruger-Rumpf Scheurebe Kabinett $19 Bright. Good acids. Slight sweetness and bitterness on finish.
1+
2004
Leitz Rüdesheimer Magdalenenkreuz Spätlese $22 Yum! Balanced. Jack: Tastes good! Simple.
1-2
2004
Lingenfelder Freinsheimer Scheurebe Spätlese Alte Reben $30 Minerally. Slightly sweet center.
3
2004
Meßmer Scheurebe (Liter) $14 House wine choice? Slight bitter finish. Good acids.
2?
2004
Meulenhof Erdener Treppchen Spätlese $22 Quaffer. Sweet. Ok. Decent acids. Tiny finish and then completely dead.
1+
2004
Minges Riesling HT (Liter) $17 Very sweet nose. Bland slightly sweet center. Okay.
0
2004
Minges Gleisweiler Hölle Scheurebe Spätlese $24 No No No! Get this out of my mouth! Ick. Jack: I liked! For those that like Gewurtz this is the one.
2-3
2004
Müller-Catoir  Gimmeldinger Mandelgarten Kabinett $35 Honey notes. Over-ripe peach/apricot on finish.
2
2004
Willi Schaefer Graacher Domprobst Spätlese #10 $42 Slightly effervescent – like tart flat lime-lemon soda. Jack: Best wine of the day. Finish goes on forever.
4+
2004
Willi Schaefer  Estate Riesling $19 Happy to drink a bottle. Great nose. Sweet center. Slight acids in center. Good! A good house wine.
2?
1999
Schloß (Schloss) Saarstein  Auslese $20 Sweet. Coffee Grounds. Unique. Turkish Coffee. Decent finish.
3?
2004
Selbach-Oster Zeltinger Schloßberg Kabinett $23 Flat lemon-lime soda with less sugar.
2+
2004
Selbach-Oster Zeltinger Schloßberg Auslese $34 Balanced. Really good. Where’s the lobster?!
3-4
2004
Spreitzer Oestricher Lenchen Kabinett $23 Cool aquamarine bottle. Balanced!
3+
2004
Strub Niersteiner Kabinett (liter) $15 Crowd pleaser. Very sweet style. Very soft almost like a brioche crust finish. A good house drinker.
1
2004
Strub Niersteiner Brückchen Kabinett $18 Really great acids but not so balanced. Jack: Not excited.
 
1997
von Buhl Forster Ungeheuer Auslese Classic  $25 Very, very sweet. Almost dessert. Sweet caramelized burnt sugar – creme brulee.
3?
2002
Von Kesselstatt Josephshöfer Spätlese $19 *Drink now. Good balanced. Decent balance.
3*
2004
Weegmüller Haardter Bürgergarten Kabinett $19 Great value. Very sweet Kabinett. Light balanced – good. Slightly caraway.
3+


Champagne
John Kwitkor Valley View’s Champagne Selections
NV
Claude Carré et Fils Brut $30 Medium bubbles. Yeasty center. Bread finish. A bit of tartness. Jack: Kinda like.
2
1997
Claude Carré et Fils Brut $50 Good acids. A bit tart. Balanced. Slight sourness on finish.
1-2
NV
Paul Dethune  Blanc de Noir Brut $40 Sweet bread. Interesting flavors. Almost Beef Wellington.
3+
NV
Paul Dethune  Princesse Des Thunes $50 Frothy mousse. A lot of bubbles. Thin center. Clean finish. More subtle.
2-3
NV
Pehu-Simonet  Brut $40 Not too frothy. Sour lemons on finish.
2-3
NV
Pehu-Simonet  Brut Rosé $45 Very light pink. Tiny bit of acidic strawberry on finish.
1-2?
2000
Pierre Jamain  Brut $45 Liquid Pixie Stix.
1?

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