2015 Julia Bertram, Spatburgunder “Handwerk” Dernau, Ahr Germany.
A lovely and delicate wine, the 2015 Julia Bertram Spatburgunder Handwerk from Germany’s Ahr region, one of the world’s great Pinot Noir areas, is wonderfully vibrant and light on it’s feet with it’s terroir driven smoky slate character and subtle strawberry fruit, is not as intense as the famed Meyer-Nakel, where she interned in 2009, but without question an impressive wine! Julia’s story is pretty interesting too, going from the 64th German Wine Queen to maker of world class Pinot Noir in Dernau on the Ahr River, her family has made wine for generations, but she, who was born just in 1989 (talk about youthful ambition and calling), is focused on her own thing now concentrating on steep slope old vines on that intense slate. She’s all about lightness and grace, but with texture and length, and this 2015 Handwerk, sourced from various parcels is beautiful from start to finish, it at first feels impossibly dreamy, but gains layers by the minute with exotic spices, rosewater and always the mineralite that shines at this wines core. Julia’s first release was from the 2013 vintage after getting her ”Bachelor of Science” in viticulture and oenology at the University of Applied Sciences Geisenheim, she seems to be on course to be a superstar, her potential is more than promising! The entry level Handwerk is a great value and a gateway wine into the realm of top German Pinots, this wine dances on the palate with soft cherry, flinty/shale, sassafras, wild lavender, blood orange and tart cranberry elements. This wines charm is it’s subtle nature, but don’t be fooled this is a seriously good wine, great with salmon, roasted chicken and cured meats especially, drink from 2017 to 2024, and I can’t wait to try her denser and more barrel aged Cru (Single Vineyard) wines!
($27 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive

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