2018 Max Ferd. Richter Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese*** Mosel

SKU #1438199 97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The first three-starred Auslese since 2005 (prior to that, it was 1993, 1983 and 1975), the 2018 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese *** was picked at about 145° Oechsle. This is incredibly clear, pure, fine and fresh on the lush, concentrated, herbal and grapefruit-scented nose. On the palate, this is a generously lush, refined and salty-piquant Auslese with a tight mineral structure and lingering salinity. This is highly refined and extremely stimulating. It already drinks all too well today, but Constantin recommends cellaring it for at least 10 years. Tasted in March 2019. (SR) 97+  (6/2019)

94 points John Gilman

 The three star Auslese from the Wehlener Sonnenuhr is absolutely stellar. This was made from a parcel of one hundred and twenty year-old vines and Constantin estimates that eighty percent of the bunches selected for this bottling were botrytized. The bouquet is gorgeous, offering up scents of white cherry, pineapple, honeycomb, citrus blossoms and a nice bass note of slate. On the palate the wine is precise, pure and fullish, with lovely creaminess on the attack, excellent focus and grip, bright acids and a long, complex and dancing finish that closes with a lovely dollop of minerality. Fine, fine juice. (Drink between 2024-2070)  (3/2019)


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Price: $79.99

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Varietal:

Riesling

- While the rest of the world has often misappropriated the name--Welchriesling, Riesling Italico, Gray Riesling and Emerald Riesling are all names applied to varieties that are NOT Riesling--this exceptional German varietal has managed to maintain its identity. Perhaps its biggest claims to fame are its intoxicating perfume, often described as having honeyed stone fruit, herb, apple and citrus notes, and its incredible longevity - the wines lasting for decades. Aged Rieslings often take on a distinctive and alluring Petrol-like aroma. Within Germany, the grape seems to do best in the warming slate soils of the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer. Other German regions that turn out great Rieslings include Pfalz, Rheingau and Nahe. German Rieslings are made in a range of ripeness levels. The top wines are assigned Pr├Ądikat levels to describe their ripeness at harvest. These are: Kabinett, Sp├Ątlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Eiswein and Trockenbeerenauslese. Riesling has also achieved acclaim in France's Alsace, the only region in that country where the grape is officially permitted. Alsatian Rieslings are typically dry and wonderfully aromatic. Austrian Riesling is also steadily gaining praise and fine Riesling is also produced in Italy's Alto-Adige and Friuli, in Slovenia and much of Central and Eastern Europe. In the New World its stronghold is Australia, where it does best in the Eden and Clare Valleys. It is also planted in smaller amounts in New Zealand. In the US, winemakers are eschewing the syrupy sweet versions of the 1970s and 1980s, instead making elegant and balanced wines in both California and Washington State.
Country:

Germany

- Thanks to a recent string of excellent vintages and to the reemergence of Germany onto the international wine writing scene, this is a country that's hot, hot, hot! Germany is divided into 13 wine Region and produces a very wide variety of wine styles, from incredibly high-acid, dry wines to some of the sweetest, most unctuous concoctions on the planet and even a few surprisingly hearty reds. Most of the highest-quality wines are grown on steep banks along the rivers in these Region. Small vineyards are still mostly hand tended and picked, due to the difficult nature of mechanization on these slopes. White wine production accounts for nearly 80% of the total with Riesling being the most important varietal, though Muller-Thurgau is still more widely planted.
Sub-Region:

Mosel-Saar-Ruwer