Saturday, December 26, 2015

Realising Two Riesling Faces

There’s the dry, full-bodied, structured and winemaker complex, food-oriented style of Riesling, and the sugar-graded levels of quality defined style of Riesling which go up the pradikat system from Kabinett to Auslese and beyond, these being high in sugar and acidity, and low in alcohol.  They’re great with Asian fare and sipping on their own, whereas the dry wines are substantial in structure to eat with.  Both styles claim the historical provenance of being the original model, but it doesn’t matter nowadays, as any savvy Riesling drinker accepts both.

Starting with the 2013 Robert Weil Kiedrich Grafenberg GG Riesling from the Rheingau, a wine of great vinosity, in the riper style, yet soft-textured with perfect acid integration.  Plenty of weight and body, and seamless complexities of earth, terroir and winemaker inputs.  You wouldn’t quite guess 13.0% alc.  Structure, extract, lees, all there, lending wonderful presence, and nothing out of place.  I thought it could have been a bit more ‘out there’, but when you’re this good, you don’t need to be!

Then onto the 2013 Ansgar Clusserath Trittenheimer Apotheke RieslingSpatlese from the big bend in the Mosel.  Rich, sweet, luscious and unctuous.  Amazing yellow fruits and honied notes, with real depth and density.  But there’s a lightness of the feet around the edges, and that searing acid cut perfect to balance the sugar.  Delicious sipping, and in reality, just as easy to drink with a range of food on the table.  At 8.0% alc, it should have been a light-weight, but not the case.


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