2020 Weingut Veyder Malberg, Riesling Trocken, Veisslinger Ried Bruck, Wachau, Austria.
Highly allocated and hard to find, the single cru 2020 Veisslinger Ried Bruck dry Riesling by Veyder Malberg, one of Austria’s most sought after and elite wineries, is an outstanding example of precision winemaking and Wachau terroir with hyper crystalline focus, mineral intensity and palate impact with a complex range of flavors, aromatic joy and driving acidity. I recently gushed about the Veyder Malberg Gruner Veltliner, but this stuff is the thing of legends and reminds me just how great these Austrian Riesling are with this one joining some famous names, like Knoll, Alzinger, Bründlmayer and Hirtzberger to name a few of my favorites, that have raised the game in this region just west of Vienna, along the sloping hillsides off the Danube River. This 2020 “Bruck” beams from the glass with a shinning ultra pale golden hue and is electric on the taut and vivid medium bodied palate, it is a thrill in the mouth, but excels for its delicate natural and elegance, slowly expanding and turning vinous with layers of green apple, lime, muskmelon, tart apricot and peachy fleshy fruits along with ginger, white pepper, almond and chamomile accents. This must be on any Riesling lovers bucket list of wines, somewhere near Trimbach’s Cuvée Frederic Emile and Schlossgut Diel’s Goldlock Grosses Gewachs! The winery explains, that while the grapes have full southern exposure to the sun and high peak summer temperatures, the valley quickly cools off at nightfall. This combination contributes, they continue, to the development of ripe phenolics with less sugar than zones of the Wachau further to the east, that also gives these wine their substance without the need of malos.

The famed Peter Veyder-Malberg, the Spitz based winemaker, uses holistic organic and biodynamic practices on his collection vines that are not too far from the mighty blue Danube and set on the region’s complex soils and steep terraces. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Austria’s picturesque and historic Wachau gorge is home to some the most prestigious producers in the country and is maybe the most prized winegrowing region in the country with its warm days and cold nights, making for dramatic day and nighttime temperatures swings that provide excellent conditions for Riesling and Gruner, providing ripe concentration and vivid acidity. Peter makes less than 1000 cases per year, so there’s never enough wine to satisfy demand, and getting your hands on any of these bottles is a treasure and this one is one of his most precious! Holistic farming is the regiment for this site, which is on mica schist bedrock and decomposed mica schist topsoil and located in the Spitzer Graben, a valley to the far western end of the Wachau with less River influence. The winemaking is all about expressing the vineyard and the Bruck saw no botrytis and was carefully picked to ensure clarity and quality with the grapes seeing a lengthy cold maceration and then the juice was tank settled up to 24 hours. The fermentation(s) are all natural and done in a mix (depending the wine) of stainless steel and 300l-1500l old barrels with the Riesling seeing absolutely no malo-lactic conversion and aged exclusively in stainless steel for about eight months with the wine going through a sterile filtration to prevent malo-lactic fermentation in bottle and keep things fresh and vibrant, these wines are built for the long haul. This vintage is riveting stuff and I am grate for the chance to taste it, I only wish I could re-vist it in 15 to 20 years!
($93 Est.) 95 Points, grapelive

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