From the small Nahe region (close to Mosel), this is a good age to tackle a quality German spatlese Riesling.
The wine’s colour is a light gold, and importantly the wine is still very fresh, showing some honeyed development, but the interplay of sugar and acidity ensures there is plenty left in reserve. It’s a proper, typical, German sweet Riesling, with power and grace packed into its modest alcohol level.
There are some sweet ginger spice notes, candlewax and leaf, with breathing helpfully bringing out more aromatic lime and honeysuckle. The palate is viscous, but with some oiliness too, flavours closely mirroring the aromatics.
The wine is unforced, has delightful persistence and is highly drinkable, with just some faint, but attractive bitterness adding to its charm.
Admittedly, 2005 produced many terrific wines from Germany, and we are fortunate in Australia that Cellarhand imports a wide range of Donnhoff’s wines.
Drink to 2027, and 92 points.
From a terrific year in the Mosel, this wine provides extremely attractive drinking, and shows the magic that time can generate. We visited the cellar door (via appointment) in 2007, and were struck by the quality, then the astonishing range of back vintages available. A quick tour of the winery and the small library of museum stock left us breathless.
Golden in colour, this wine possesses varied attractive and complex attributes -there is certainly the TDN (petroleum) character, and a mélange of green (nettle), yellow (peach and further tropicals), plus red (blackcurrant) fruits. The palate also displays these, as well as a dense minerally stony texture. I continue to be surprised at how much flavor can exist in such a light frame. And a key bonus attribute is the wine’s vitality and freshness, with crunchy acidity neatly offsetting the 106 g/l of residual sugar (my speculation was 90 g/l). All -around deliciousness saw the bottle contents diminish rapidly.
This wine is in its prime, expected to thrive till 2026, and 92 points.
2005 Bassermann-Jordan Forster Jesuitengarten Riesling Spatlese 9%
A wonderful year in Germany, this wine provides extravagant drinking pleasure, even though its from the less-regarded Pfalz area. It still retains a bright lemon colour, and ripples with energy. Lemon zest, apple and flint thrill, with some brown pear and semi-tropical fruit added on the palate. Plenty of time ahead.
93 points, and delicious drinking now until 2025
2005 Ch Filhot 14%
I tried this a few months ago, giving it 92 points and a drinking window to 2025.
The wine tasted last week was still a bright amber colour with lemon citrus, nectarine, vanilla bean and quince battling joyously. It is amazingly lush without betraying its origin, and clearly came from a very ripe year. This time – and this bottle- I was wishing for a touch more acidity as the overwhelming sweetness edged towards, but avoided cloying. No regrets, as this is an authentic Sauternes style, but not scaling the heights of the previous tasting.
Drink to 2020, 90 points.
From the Pfalz area of Germany – not as highly regarded as the Mosel, but not to be dismissed. A lovely “low-tech” label that suggests its hand-written (artisanal).
Gosh this is so easy, indeed dangerous to drink. It’s a light gold colour, with the usual suspects making their welcome appearance on the bouquet – an assortment of varied tropical fruits including mango, pineapple, and other non-tropical fruits including red apple and grapefruit. There is viscosity, mixed spices, an appealing amount of sweetness for a spatlese-style (at least) , and its clearly, and cleanly Riesling.
What an excellent match for a wide range of food- and it worked especially well with tandoori chicken and mushroom risotto.
It is not the most complex wine you will strike and there is no improvement in front of it, but its always righteous to strike a delicious wine at its peak.
Drink to 2018, score 89.