2015 Weingut von Winning, Riesling Trocken “Marmar” Pfalz, Germany.
Von Winning’s Marmar Riesling is one of the most adventurous and one most exciting Rieslings I’ve ever tasted, it’s a cuvee of the top Grosses Gewachs (Grand Cru dry wines) with extended lees aging and blended into this remarkable offering, and if you are unfamiliar to von Winning, they are now one of Germany’s top estates in the Pfalz region making Burgundy inspired wines. First, without question, the von Winning Marmar tastes like Domaine Leflaive’s Chevalier-Montrachet more than you’d expect, meaning this gorgeous dry Riesling is absolutely stunning and wildly thrilling with layers of brioche, steely mineral, lemon and apple fruits as well as chalky/stony detail with heavenly textures and an almost full bodied palate, while still bursting with energy and lithe focus. Von Winning has some amazing vineyards to chose from the Grand Crus include the flamboyant Kalkofen, the intense Ungeheuer, the delicately beautiful Perchstein and the most sought after and most expensive vineyard in Germany the Kirchenstuck, all incredible Grosses Gewachs (terroir driven) in their own right and comparable to the Montrachet Crus, grown on mostly sandstone and limestone soils, which give these wines their unique character, they are made using Burgundy style winemaking by Stefan Attmann and team from organic high density vines. Fermented in 500ml French oak with extended lees aging, with the Marmar getting an additional year, the dry Grosses Gewachs get very gentile handling with only gravity flow and native yeast fermets, all of which shows through clearly in these fantastic bottlings, with both 2015 and 2016 proving to be wonderful, with the 2016’s being slighter lighter and more elegant, while the 2015’s are monumental in every way. Tasted with Andreas Hutwohl, sale director and winemaker with von Winning, at the Skurnik Wines West San Francoisco Tasting, these wines are among the best white wines I’ve tasted, and it’s not just Riesling either, von Winning crafts an excellent Sauvignon Blanc, and I mean do mean excellent, it rivals the the best Loire and Bordeaux efforts with ease, their 2014 Sauvignon Blanc 500, a wood aged gem, is like Dagueneau meets Haut Brion Blanc! Back to the dry Marmar Riesling, this is a wine that will blow your mind and is worth every penny, if you understand what you are drinking, it will not be for everyone, but dear God is it good! It’s graceful leesy charms, lifting acidity and with it’s wet stone and liquid mineral class with captivate even the most die hard Burgundy fanatic, the nose gathers with air with hints of orange, white flowers, peach and hazelnut as well as lingering creamy lushness. This wine is totally iconic, very different and will continue to evolve with age, it should cellar well for decades, very little of it will be available sadly, you’ll need to be very motivated and persistent to get this, much in the same way you’d have to be to get Roulot, Leflaive, Raveneau or Lafon, but the rewards will be treasured, no question!
($150 Est.) 97+ Points, grapelive

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