Grapelive: Wine of the Day November 3, 2016

2015loewen18962015 Carl Loewen, Riesling Feinherb, Maximin Herrenberg “1896” Mosel, Germany.
A truly spectacular white wine, the Loewen 1896 Feinherb Riesling, is special bottling from what are believed to be the oldest Riesling vines in Germany at Maximin Herrenberg, planted as the label says in 1896, this is a gorgeous dry Riesling with intense concentration and like a burning sun brightness that shines through in this mineral infused beauty. While the wine is listed legally as Feinherb, it drinks like a Grosses Gewachs, tasting it blind, you’d never know it wasn’t and those few extra grams of sugar are easily swallowed up by the wines vivid acidity, saline notes and spicy blue slate infusion, this is awesome stuff. Weingut Carl Loewen has always been a reliable source for fine Rieslings in the Mosel, and Carl’s traditional methods and poised winemaking have always caressed fine detail and transparent terroir character into the wines. With his son Christopher in the cellar and his own signature adding to the mix has really given the latest set of wines an extra sense of grace and seductive beauty, they used native yeasts and gravity flow with old cask aging with long lees contact, which gives these wines their finesse, structure and wonderful textures, while still having dense extract and vibrancy. Christopher has done winemaking at the famed Von Schubert Maximin Grauhaus as well as Felton Road in New Zealand and is very talented young winemaker, his touch has brought huge rewards in these 2015 wines. The 2015’s are all damn near perfect in form and class, they really stand out and impress with this great vintage, especially the drier wines with the Herrenberg Trocken and Ritsch GG really looking good, but this wine with it’s special label and wax capsule stole my heart and blew me away! The Loewen 2015 Riesling Feinherb 1896, imported by Terry Theise, a super limited bottling, is likely a wine I never experience again sadly, though I hold out hope I do, it is amazingly complex and alluring for such a baby with a sublime palate of tantalizing flavors, purity and vigor with layers of citrus, apricot, tropical essences, lime blossoms, white cherry, spicy shale, grey sea salt and wet flint set in a medium bodied, liquid mineral driven wine of opulence and delicacy. There is a real wow factor here, and now I’ve tried this fantastic wine twice, everything is confirmed, it should get even better in the next 10 to 20 years or more, it has a firm grip and takes some air to awaken, but it’s massive potential already shows, this wine can become legendary, it is a unique, timeless and historic expression of time and place. This is brilliant Riesling, bravo to father and son Loewen on a masterpiece!
($80 Est.) 94-96 Points, grapelive