2016 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz, Riesling Sekt, Extra Brut Sparkling Wine, Pfalz, Germany.
The extended lees bottle aged Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Riesling Sekt Extra Brut, made in the traditional Champagne method is delicious and elegant bubbly, coming from all organic grapes and chalky soil sites in the Pfalz with apple, citrusy notes, brioche, fig and mineral notes leading the way on the impressive richly flavored, but absolutely bone dry palate. This is yeasty and yummy stuff with a touch of reductive smokiness, hazelnut, delicate florals and dried apricot, adding complexity, all supported by its fine beading effervescent mousse, it is lovely on its own, but serious enough to rival grower producer Champagne. German sparkling wines have really become the it thing and the latest generation are outstanding, with Sekt houses like Raumland, who helped here with this Rebholz Riesling Sekt, being highly sought after. The Rebholz family’s connection to viticulture in Germany dates back historically to the 16th century and were important recently in promoting dry styles of wine, especially with there cru Rieslings. Located In the “South-Pfalz”, where the limestone terroir rules, the main estate all biodynamic vineyard Im Sonnenschein has Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc mainly as well as some Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer and Muskateller planted, all of which are tasty dry versions mostly.
Germany’s Pfalz region, one of the biggest and most diverse, with the region’s terroir varring from sandy (multi-colored sandstone) soils to classic limestone and some slate helps contribute to wines that range from crisp and refreshing to rich and structured, with everything from Chardonnay to heavy reds now found here, though most people tend to look for Riesling and Pinot Noir. The Pfalz enjoys a temperate climate with warm summers, allowing for grape ripening and flavor development, and in recent years we’ve seen Sauvignon Blanc rise in quality to rival anything from France, plus Muskateller (Muscat) trocken can also be exceptional, which Rebholz does. Rebholz has been an important Pfalz estate for years and the name Rebholz translates to “wood of the vine” and owner Hansjörg Rebholz was chosen Winemaker of the Year in 2002 and since has been awarded five grapes by Gault-Millau, its highest rating. The most notable wine at Rebholz, might be its Grand Cru Riesling from the Kastanienbusch vineyard with its rocky, rusty-red soil, which is red and grey slate, making for a monumental and singular wine. It is widely known that Hansjörg Rebholz was one of the movers and shakers, or leading lights in the Grosses Gewächs movement in Germany, becoming a VDP Pfalz estate in 1991, with Hansjörg even being president in 1999, so be sure to check out the Gas here. Hansjörg has twin sons, Hans and Valentin who are the next generation here and look set to further the winery’s glorious reputation.
($39 ESt.) 93 Points, grapelive