2011 Donnhoff Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese (1.5L)

SKU #1117637 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Freesia and cherry blossom scent Donnhoff’s characteristically floral and endearing 2011 Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spatlese, whose palate alliance of creaminess, levity, infections juiciness, and persistently wafting perfume is downright irresistible. The fruit here lusciously favors Persian melon, pear, quince and dark plum with an enlivening squirt of fresh lime. Black tea smokiness adds intrigue, pear skin a touch of incisive counterpoint, while a subtle sense of stony underpinnings sets off yet more strikingly this gem’s purity, transparency and succulence of fruit as well as headiness of perfume. Look for at least 15 years of glory.  (2/2013)

93 points Wine & Spirits

 Four days after opening, this wine was still going strong, plush enough to match the fat gilding a slice of smoked duck breast and direct enough to cut right through it. Its mouthwatering minerality is as smooth as the slate in this vineyard, with light herbal notes that give extra lift to the cherry pit and peach flesh flavor.  (12/2012)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Very minerally and creamy, with plush flavors of ripe apricot, pear and spice. Enticing mint and white cherry notes linger with ginger. The lively finish features chive and candied basil accents. Drink now through 2028.  (2/2013)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Subtle aromas of peach, cinnamon and wild herbs. The bright pineapple flavor is nicely framed by subtle minerality. Full-bodied yet elegant on the finish, this riesling is both quite long and eminently drinkable.  (2/2013)

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Price: $99.99
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- While the rest of the world has often misappropriated the name--Welchriesling, Riesling Italico, Gray Riesling and Emerald Riesling are all names applied to varieties that are NOT Riesling--this exceptional German varietal has managed to maintain its identity. Perhaps its biggest claims to fame are its intoxicating perfume, often described as having honeyed stone fruit, herb, apple and citrus notes, and its incredible longevity - the wines lasting for decades. Aged Rieslings often take on a distinctive and alluring Petrol-like aroma. Within Germany, the grape seems to do best in the warming slate soils of the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer. Other German regions that turn out great Rieslings include Pfalz, Rheingau and Nahe. German Rieslings are made in a range of ripeness levels. The top wines are assigned Prädikat levels to describe their ripeness at harvest. These are: Kabinett, Spätlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Eiswein and Trockenbeerenauslese. Riesling has also achieved acclaim in France's Alsace, the only region in that country where the grape is officially permitted. Alsatian Rieslings are typically dry and wonderfully aromatic. Austrian Riesling is also steadily gaining praise and fine Riesling is also produced in Italy's Alto-Adige and Friuli, in Slovenia and much of Central and Eastern Europe. In the New World its stronghold is Australia, where it does best in the Eden and Clare Valleys. It is also planted in smaller amounts in New Zealand. In the US, winemakers are eschewing the syrupy sweet versions of the 1970s and 1980s, instead making elegant and balanced wines in both California and Washington State.


- Thanks to a recent string of excellent vintages and to the reemergence of Germany onto the international wine writing scene, this is a country that's hot, hot, hot! Germany is divided into 13 wine Region and produces a very wide variety of wine styles, from incredibly high-acid, dry wines to some of the sweetest, most unctuous concoctions on the planet and even a few surprisingly hearty reds. Most of the highest-quality wines are grown on steep banks along the rivers in these Region. Small vineyards are still mostly hand tended and picked, due to the difficult nature of mechanization on these slopes. White wine production accounts for nearly 80% of the total with Riesling being the most important varietal, though Muller-Thurgau is still more widely planted.