2018 Max Ferd. Richter Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett Feinherb Mosel

SKU #1434171 93 points John Gilman

 The 2018 Kabinett Feinherb from the Wehlener Sonnenuhr had also just been bottled ahead of Prowein. This is made from a parcel of vines that are eighty to one hundred years of age and comes in at just over ten percent octane, with 7.8 grams of acidity and twenty-two grams of sugar. The wine is pure and a beautifully classical expression of this lovely terroir, offering up scents of apple, pear, vanilla bean, salty, slate minerality, spring flowers and a whisper of wild yeasts. On the palate the wine is pure, medium-full, filigreed and superbly transparent, with fine complexity and bounce, bright acids and fine focus and grip on the poised and vibrant finish. Fine juice.  (3/2019)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2018 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett Feinherb is sourced partly (two-thirds) from the old, central part of the vineyard ('Im Brück') with 80- to 90-year-old vines and partly (one-third) from an upper plot with 20-year-old vines. Entirely vinified in traditional fuders, this is a bright, lush, warm and very fine Sonnenuhr with fine slate aromas intermixed with floral, flinty and perfectly ripe fruit aromas. The fruit aroma is almost endless. Lush, round and intense on the palate, the 2018 is perfectly ripe and concentrated but celebrates the finesse and mineral tension of the Sonnenuhr and finishes with lingering salinity and stimulating grip. Still reductive due to the addition of sulfur, this highly promising Sonnenuhr was bottled with 24 grams of well-packed residual sugar. Bottled in early March 2019 and tasted at the end of the month. (SR)  (6/2019)

K&L Notes

90 points Mosel Fine Wines: "The 2018er Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett Feinherb comes from fruit harvested at 87° Oechsle in the prime Sandpichter sector, and was fermented down to 20 g/l of residual sugar. It offers a rather ripe and elegant nose of vineyard peach, herbs and spices. The wine is nicely juicy and intense on the palate and leaves a quite assertive but still playful feel in the long and delicately off-dry finish. A couple of years is needed to reach its drinking window." (8/2019)

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Price: $21.99

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- 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.


- 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.