2017 Weingut Peter Lauer, Riesling Trocken, Fass 18, Ayler Kupp, Grosses Gewachs, Saar, Germany.
The Peter Lauer estate in the Saar, with winemaker Florian Lauer is one of best in this region just off the Mosel and the wines all show a terroir dominant profile with crystalline purity, mineral intensity with lots of dry extract, but with a divine sense of lightness to them, as this 2017 Ayler Kupp GG shows to perfection. Florian Lauer, as mentioned in prior reviews, head of Weinhaus Peter Lauer and famous for this Kupp Fass 18 Grosses Gewachs, and his drier wines that are in stark contrast to his famous Saar neighbors Egon Müller and Hanno Zilliken. At Lauer, as noted by their importer Vom Boden, the focus here is on the dry-tasting Rieslings, as opposed to the higher residual sugar wines of the mentioned more traditional Egon Mueller and Zillken. The palate now has a sense of maturity, a generous depth and the color has a deepened gold/yellow hue in the glass, all making for a beauty of a dry Riesling with yellow peach, lime, green apple and candied, but tangy quince fruits, along with a rich leesy note, spicy clove, rose oil, saline, earth and wet flint. The crisp and steely Fass 18 GG is also very aromatic with orange blossom, rose petal and a faint tropical note, which really adds to the pleasure here, this really is an exceptional and rewarding Lauer wine and one that will compliment a meal, it will go great with a full ranch of cuisine choices.
The vines are old here, at Peter Lauer, are well over 70-years-old with mostly slate intense soils with subtle changes in soil composition, exposition, altitude, and micro-climate as well as vine age all play influential roles, giving each wine their own soulful expression. Coming into the winery the golden Riesling grapes are whole-cluster pressed directly in a gentle pneumatic press, with the juice occasionally pumped back in for a short maceration with the skins. Florian Lauer does his Riesling fermentations with native yeasts and is committed to very natural style with no fining agents or any other additions are ever added, except a touch of SO2. The Lauer wines see a fairly short aging period with elevage in a combination of vessels, with the majority done in stainless steel, but also fiberglass vats and with most of the Cru trockens, like this Grosses Gewachs, going into traditional Fuder oak casks for 1-6 months. There’s so much to love here at Lauer, with the Grosses Gewachs leading Lauer’s lineup, which includes the Barrel X, a fresh off dry Riesling that has its own cult like following and it is the appellation-level or regional expression that is Lauer’s Platonic ideal of what a Saar Riesling should be. I must say, that I was very impressed by this 2017 Fass 18, Ayler Kupp GG, it has all the right stuff and never puts a foot wrong and should just get better and better over the next 3 to 5 years, and again I recommend it very highly and in particular with food, with robust flavors, I can see it going fabulous with subtle spiced Asian cuisine and well as poultry and seafoods.
($49 to $55 Est) 95 Points, grapelive