2016 & 2017 Rieslings from the Master
Dönnhoff serves as a barometer for the possible quality in a given vintage in Germany and these wines are first among equals. We are pleased to present a special selection of Rieslings from Germany’s master producer. Today we are offering wines from the phenomenal 2016 vintage, as well as brand new releases from the 2017 vintage.
2016 Kreuznacher Kahlenberg Riesling Trocken, $35 per bottle
90+ Points, Wine Advocate: From Bad Kreuznach, the 2016 Nahe Riesling Kahlenberg Trocken has a coolish and smoky quartzite bouquet with ripe and fresh white fruit aromas. Round and elegant on the palate, the Kahlenberg has lush, elegant fruit balanced by frisky, buoyant and pretty charming acidity. It is a delicious Riesling that needs a year or two to develop all its charm. - Stephan Reinhardt, February 2018
2016 Roxheimer Höllenpfad Trocken, $35 per bottle
91 Points, Wine Advocate: From Roxheimer red sandstone soils, the 2016 Nahe Riesling Höllenpfad Trocken is pure, fresh and elegant on the slightly flinty nose, with subtle herbal and bright fruit aromas. On the palate, this is an intense, very finessed and creamy-textured Riesling with a long and intense finish. It is well structured and reveals a persistent finish. - Stephan Reinhardt, February 2018
2016 Felsenberg Riesling Grosses Gewächs Felsenturmchen, $60 per bottle
93+ Points, Wine Advocate: From Schlossböckelheim’s stony, volcanic soils, the 2016 Nahe Riesling Felsenberg “GG” ‘Felsentürmchen’ offers a very pure and delicate bouquet of crushed stones and ripe seed fruits. Lush and intense on the palate with generous but finessed fruit, this is a very elegant and well-structured Riesling with great balance and a long, salty-piquant finish. Very long and powerful yet pure and very charming. - Stephan Reinhardt, February 2018
2016 Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Spätlese, $53 per bottle
94 Points, Wine Advocate: The 2016 Nahe Riesling Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Spätlese is bright, fresh and coolish-piquant on the nose, with flinty and slightly reductive aromas. Lush and piquant on the palate, this is a generous, mouth-filling Spätlese with a long, piquant and spicy-mineral finish. The Hermannshöhle is more dense and rich on the palate, the Brücke more light, delicate and finessed. - Stephan Reinhardt, February 2018
NEW!! 2017 Vintage:
Dönnhoff’s early releases just arrived Stateside and with the 2017 vintage down 40% in quantity, this is the only opportunity to purchase the Estate Rieslings and Oberhäuser Leisetenberg Kabinett and Tonschiefer. 2017 was a difficult year in this part of the Nahe because of the April frosts, which decimated the crop here. “We were super happy with the wines we produced, but the problem is that the cellar is half empty” remarked Cornelius. The range this year is outstanding and in typical fashion, the wines almost defy description – nothing else tastes quite like these wines from a quiet bend in the Nahe.
2017 Hermann Donnhoff Estate Riesling, $22 per bottle
This is from two main vineyards Oberhauser Felsenberg (volcanic) and Kieselberg (slate) as well as declassified fruit from the Grand Cru sites and Niederhäuser Klamm. The idea here is to make a village wine, basically, though it’s sold and marketed as a Gutswein or Estate bottled basic wine. The Estate wine combines the two major soils that dominate the holdings for the estate, giving the drinker a look into what Dönnhoff is all about. The basic wine is a calling card and thus Cornelius wants to make statement. A PERFECT VINTAGE OF THE BEST WINE VALUE IN THE ENTIRE WORLD, any color, any grape, any country, any price-point. This year for the first time it also contains fruit from a new acquisition, a hectare in the (Niederhäuser) Klamm which we know from Jakob Schnieder – it’s a mélange of slate and weathered porphyry, and has both steep and flat sections.
2017 Hermann Donnhoff Tonschiefer Riesling Trocken, $24 per bottle
This is the dry version of the Oberhäuser Leistenberg. The hill just to the left of the vineyard is called the Lemberg, and with the Leistenberg on the other side, these hillsides form a valley. Cold air blows through the area, passing by the Leistenberg making it nearly impossible for botrytis to develop. Further, the exposition is southeast rather than due south like the Hermannshöhle. This means longer ripening and lower potential alc, perfect for Kabinett style wines. Tonschiefer means “clay slate”, so named for the soil that dominates the vineyard. This is the original vineyard for the family and holds a very special place.
2017 Hermann Donnhoff Oberhauser Leistenberg Riesling Kabinett, $27 per bottle
See the info for Tonschiefer above, but note that the wines are slightly different and that the fermentations for the tanks/barrels that go into the Kabinett are stopped based on taste. The pieces here are also divided by taste meaning that the sections with slightly less pronounced acidity and a character that would be better for a dry wine are selected and separated by Cornelius during fermentation.
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