Thirty one Winemakers were present at the event, each at a table which was numbered. Kim and I only got to make it through 26 tables (don’t worry, we’re not complete lushes, each glass was no more than two or three sips total). The event brought out magazine writers, industry insiders, Bar and Restaurant owners and Wine and Liquor Stores and of course bloggers like Kim and I.
First things first, we needed to eat something first because who know what effect all that wine will have on an empty stomach. And the event had an amazing Asian buffet set up
So after we ate to our hearts content, we headed to the first table. I must note that both Kim and I like sweet Rieslings but while she likes the ultra sweet, I prefer something less jarring. I seem to gravitate to the Spätlese (made from grapes picked later in the harvest when they are very ripe) and Auslese (made from overripe grapes, picked later in Harvest than Spätlese) Rieslings. Below is a list of my favorite Rieslings from the event
Rudi Wiest Selections, located in San Marcos, California – He had 10 selections but I truly fell in love with one, The Fritz Haag (Mosel): 2007 Riesling Spätlese, Beauneberger Juffer Sonnenuhr, not too sweet, quite fruity and very refreshing.
Weingut J. Kroger KG, whose 2007 Riesling Spätlese, Eltviller Sonnenberg was also quite refreshing, just a bit more fruity but not overly sweet. Don’t worry, they do have a US importer/distributor, Lietzau Marketing in Tuscon, Arizona is your contact.
Weingut Georg Müller Stiftung – although they had a few Riesling Spätlese, they were dry and semi-dry (dry wines are not for me), but they did have an excellent 2007 Riesling Auslese, Hattenheimer Hassel which although was very full bodied, it was quite light and not too sweet for an Auslese. Lucky for me, the importer, Metropolis Wine Merchants, Inc is located right here in NYC. I think I’ll be making a call for see what stores they sell this Riesling to.
Weingüter Graf von Schönborn – we only did a brief tasting at this table, they had two Riesling Spätlese but I only got to taste one because it was a bit crowded but I did quite enjoy the 2007 Riesling Spätlese, Hattenhein Pfaffenberg/Jubliäum, it was light but had a pronounced aroma. This Riesling is imported by Frederick Wildman and Sons Ltd., also located in NYC; I might just contact them in regards to the other Riesling I didn’t get a chance to sample.
Affentaler Winzergenossenschaft Bühl eG – Affentaler also had a wonderful 2007 Riesling Auslese, Selection Leo Klär, gorgeous color, flavor and aroma. As mentioned before, Auslese is sweeter than Spätlese but I thought this Auslese was quite light and not as fullbodied as most which was very good; perfect with a cheese platter. You don’t have to travel far for this wonderful Auslese because it is imported by Niche Import Co. located in Cedar Knolls, NJ.
Braun. Nierstein – Another top favorite of mine – the 2006 Riesling Auslese, Niersteiner Pettenthal; sugar content-wise, it was the perfect level at 70. At tastings, you generally have to spit the wines out and clear your palette for the next but I actually drank all of this Auslese. So refreshing, the taste was very fruity and quite crisp. It went down extremely smooth and I must say I savored that flavor for a while before I hit the next table. Unfortunately, I will not be enjoying this heavenly nectar soon because they are seeking an importer; contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you know of an importer.
UPDATE: Braun is currently available in the United States as of last month. You can order in select states or online at http://www.overstockwineonline.com/whitewines.html
Einig-Zenzen GmbH & Co. KG – a wonderful 2003 Riesling Auslese, Dr. Zenzen, Valwiger Herrenberg, Mosel, it was one of my favorites at the tasting. If bottles were being sold at this event, this would have been a definite purchase for me, the perfect amount of sweetness with a light aroma. There is a US importer, although I’ve been so busy I haven’t had a chance to contact them but they are Zenzen Wines, locatged in Clearwater, FL
Weingut Rappenhof – another Auslese favorite of mine, specifically their 1998 Riesling Auslese, Niersteiner Pettenthal was a bit sweeter than most but not too overpowering in sweetness. I believe the percentage of sugar content was 99% (if I remember correctly). Sadly they do not have a US importer or distributor as yet but they are looking (if someone happens to know of someone, contact email@example.com )
Weingut Dr. Pauly-Bergweiler – my last but certainly not least favorite Riesling was their 2008 Riesling Spätlese, Bernkasteler alte Badstube am Doctorberg. This is another I would have definitely purchased one the spot if it was available for purchase. And oh happy day, they too are imported by New York based importer, Frederick Wildman and Sons Ltd.
I have a feeling this summer will be filled with days glasses of light and sweet Rieslings