Jubiläumsverkostung: 30 Jahre rote Reben wieder an der Mosel, so we celebrated 30-year anniversary of red wines from Mosel -Saar-Ruwer wine region in Germany. Organizer for this event was again Rikhard, who is a big fan of Mosel. Rikhard had summarized history well so next paragraph is direct copy paste from his text:

Rieslings from the Mosel area were among the most expensive wines in the world at the start of the 20th century. In order to collect money into their upcoming war chest, the German Nazi party made it illegal in 1933 to cultivate any red grapes along the Mosel, Saar or Ruwer rivers. Some fifty years later, in the spring of 1987 wine maker Ulrich Stein won his case against the federal state of Rheinland and the ban was lifted.

Rikhard also made a UNOFFICIAL category for red wines from Mosel. We also categorized the wines we tasted using Rikhard´s system.

A1: The big bulk of Mosel spätburgunder (table wines, usually sweet side)

A2: The Oaked efforts (Usually more dry than A1 category wines)

A3: The high quality efforts (efforts to make better quality wines, oak is not so important. Rather light than heavy wines)

B1: New German grape crossings (Dornfelder, Dunkelfelder, Cabernet Dorsa,Cabernet Mitos, Acolon, Domina, Regent, Dakapo. These wines have also sweetness even labeled as trocken.)

B2: The oaked crossings (these are not completely dry wines either)

B3:The high quality efforts (efforts to make better high quality wines but taken limitations of these crossing grapes.)

C: Other international grapes  (Frühburger, Schwarzriesling,Cabernet Sauvignon,Merlot ja St.Laurent) These wines are usually with good quality, dry and light body.

D: Burgundian efforts (efforts to make Burgundian style wines from clones of Pinot Noir which planted to a good quality and warm vineyards. Vinification is very similar to Burgundian. Barriques are second hand from Burgundian estates or new, then barriques are from same suppliers what Burgundian estates used.

The tasting wasn’t blind this time. It was divided into three flights instead of two as original plan was. Two estimated fighters for the win were left as a third flight. Below is a list of wines with comments and category.

Flight 1

Palate cleanser: St.Laurentius -2014 Spätburgunder Rose Sekt b.A.”Cuvee Nadine” Brut (Voted as the best sekt (German sparkling wine) house in Mosel, Cremant like with lot of roseberries.)

  1. Stein – 2015 Spätburgunder “red light” Kabinett trocken
    • Category A3, Nothing to comment about, some tasters thought this was corked but I don´t think so.
  2. Rinke – 2015 Oberemmeler Altenberg Pinot Noir trocken.
    • Category A3, Very basic sour cherry like and light body.
  3. Martin Müllen- 2014 Trabener Ungsberg Spätburgunder trocken
    • Category A3, Slight fruity with good acidity, oak can be noted easily.
  4. Bischöfliche Weingüter Trier – 2014 Saint Laurent trocken
    • Category C, Rotten apples and sewer!!
  5. Weinfelderhof -2015 Pinot Noir Barrique trocken
    • Category A2, Oak is strongly present, vanilla and very much bourbon like.
  6. Günther Steinmetz – 2010 “40 XL” trocken
    • Category B3, Lot of red berries on the nose and palate.

Flight 2, Category D: Burgundian efforts

Palate cleanser:  Clemens Busch – 2012 Spätburgunder Blanc de Noir Sekt b.A Brut (Like a Blanc de Noir champagne but more closed and mute.)

  1. Dr.Siemens – 2011 Pinot Noir trocken 
    • Oaky and smoky packet.
  2. Rinke – 2014 Langsurer Brüderberg Pinot Noir trocken.
    • Very dark but still clear red berries are present. Acidic and long. This wine was awesome.
  3. Maximum Grünhaus – 2014 Spätburgunder trocken
    • Less oaky and acidic than previous one. Rinke is leading!
  4. Lehnert-Veit – 2014 Piesporter Falkenberg Spätburgunder trocken
    • More New World style like Oregon USA, round and long.
  5. Günther Steinmetz – 2011 Kestener Herrenberg Pinot Noir trocken
    • Style hold but lame compared to previous ones.

Flight 3, Category D: Burgundian efforts, battle of Titans.

  1. Daniel Twardowski – 2011 Pinot Noix Ardoise trocken
    • Slightly wet dog on the nose, but balance is in remarkable level in this wine.
  2. Markus Molitor -2011 Brauneberger Klosgarten*** Pinot Noir trocken
    • Unbelievable symbiosis of oak and red berries. Like an excellent Burgundian.

Winner was Markus Molitor -2011 Brauneberger Klosgarten*** Pinot Noir trocken. Producer price for this wine is 79€ so there are lot of competitors from Burgundy premium cru. Second place took an another titan:  Daniel Twardowski – 2011 Pinot Noix Ardoise trocken. Price around 65€. My favourites from below twenty euros wines were Rinke – 2014 Langsurer Brüderberg Pinot Noir trocken with price of 18.5€ and super bourbon like Weinfelderhof -2015 Pinot Noir Barrique trocken with price of 7€.

Both titans were 2011 vintage which is one of the best vintages for red’s in Mosel. So lessons learnt: You can find excellent German red wines also from Mosel, not all come from more south like Baden and Württenberg. Good quality Mosel red wines are more rare and difficult to find but keep searching like Rikhard did.

-Markus Laukkanen