TN: 1983 Georg Breuer Rüdesheimer Berg Rottland Riesling Spätlese

This needed a few minutes to blow off some of the old bottle funk, but quickly breezed through that awkward stage and the wine started to emerge in full. Petrol, and honeyed stone fruit, mostly apricots. Good, medium weight to it, giving the wine some density, but without making it feel heavy. A hauntingly long, and complex finish. With more time the nose became younger and more vibrant. Fresh herbs and spices galore: dill, tarragon, chervil, cracked coriander, a touch of saffron.

No import label. While talking to the somm about how they came across the bottle, he noted it predated his time at the restaurant. It was likely sitting in the cellar the better part of two plus decades, until I serendipitously stumbled across it on the wine list on a tranquil Thursday evening. Alas, the last bottle of it in their cellar. Pity.

Throughout the evening, drinking this felt like watching a series of fast jump cuts. One minute you get the mature petrol and honeyed fruit notes the next, BAM! fresh herbs, spices and citrus oil. This went back and forth. Every time I put my nose the glass, something new. When chewed there was a super concentrated mandarin oil on the mid palate and finish that was mixed in with some slate, and some of those fresh herbs and spices. That concentration without heaviness and balance between fruit and savoury that beautifully aged Spatlese can have.

As the bottle came to an end, a plaintive fado came to mind. A wine at peak, thoroughly savoured throughout an evening, but unlikely to be experienced again. What a trip it was. A fortuitous, and much appreciated encounter.

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A wonderful note. Glad you had such a wonderful wine.