WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

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WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Salil » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:19 am

A nice trio of wines with dinner last night. Had David Bueker over, an excess of food (some veggie dishes, lots of chicken on the grill, naan, and black bean soup), and we drank some wonderful wines.

2008 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Birkweiler Kastanienbusch Riesling Großes Gewächs
The first few sips are almost devoid of fruit, and taste as if this was carved right out of stone. With a little air it really opens up, layers of fresh lime and pear fruit emerge, and over more time it turns more spicy, smoky, high-toned and herbal, all the while showing a wonderful sense of balance and finesse. There's a remarkable sense of polish to the texture, superb length and a lightness and delicate touch I don't often find in GGs.

1997 Dönnhoff Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese
This is drinking superbly right now. There's a core of fresh white peach and citrus fruit flavours with an underlying crushed stone mineral element, and a more savoury, developed creamy character that emerges with air. The sweetness is rather restrained - this is very much a classical Spätlese rather than being a small/declassified Auslese, and there's bright acidity beneath that keeps it very nicely balanced. Yum.

2008 Domaine de Montille Beaune 1er Cru Les Grèves
An incredibly light red in colour; this isn't about intensity or concentration, rather it conveys flavour with an elegance and lightness of touch that I find all too rarely. There's a wonderful aroma here that builds with air, a sensation of incredibly pure red fruit on the palate accented by stony, herbal and stemmy elements, and there's a remarkable sense of presence to the flavours even though it feels amazingly light on the palate.
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:28 am

Thanks for dinner & the wines. Great stuff.

I found substantially more fruit in the Rebholz than you did on first opening. It did gain in depth with air, but was quite friendly from first sip - at least to me.

That Donnhoff was totally past it. Don't you know that Donnhoff wines don't age? Calrity and purity were the two things that came to mind while I was drinking it. Did the creamiess develop after I left? I did not get that.

Really enjoyed the de Montille. It was a great match with the chicken - at least until we got the spicier pieces.
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby ChaimShraga » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:45 am

The de Montille note captures the best about the domaine's wines that I've tasted, especially the relatively lower end wines. That light elegance and the way they grow and build in glass.
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Salil » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:48 am

David M. Bueker wrote:That Donnhoff was totally past it. Don't you know that Donnhoff wines don't age? Calrity and purity were the two things that came to mind while I was drinking it. Did the creamiess develop after I left? I did not get that.

Yes, I revisited the Donnhoff after clearing up and was struck by how much it had changed - it had definitely turned more creamy and savoury, while still showing the same freshness and clarity of fruit. Some of those '97 Rieslings are drinking so amazingly well right now.
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Bill Hooper » Wed Mar 20, 2013 2:08 pm

That 2008 Kastanienbusch is excellent and should continue to be for many years. Alternatively, there have been some concerns over how the 2009 vintage (Germany-wide in general) is developing/will develop. I just tasted the Forster Pechstein GGs from Bürklin, Bassermann, and von Buhl on monday, and there is certainly nothing wrong with those bottles (though Bürklin smokes the other two IMO), but we shall see.

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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby David M. Bueker » Wed Mar 20, 2013 2:49 pm

Bill,

What type of concerns?
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Bill Hooper » Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:13 pm

As you know, it was a warm year and some of the wines were acidified. Some producers that I've talked with have (very candidly) expressed concerns that the wines are becoming disjointed and unbalanced and perhaps won't age very well. Interesting thoughts, but of course we'll have to approach each wine as individual and go from there. From my view, many of the 2009s that I tasted last year were completely shut-down. Some are starting to wake up tasting a bit more evolved than they should after only two years, but who knows. There isn't yet much experience with adding acid to wine in Germany. In 2003, many did not because they didn't know how, making 2009 in effect the first trial for that method for a lot of vintners. In 2011 acidification was probably carried-out with a lighter hand and therefore less impactful. We shall see.

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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Mark Lipton » Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:05 pm

Salil wrote:1997 Dönnhoff Norheimer Kirschheck Riesling Spätlese
This is drinking superbly right now. There's a core of fresh white peach and citrus fruit flavours with an underlying crushed stone mineral element, and a more savoury, developed creamy character that emerges with air. The sweetness is rather restrained - this is very much a classical Spätlese rather than being a small/declassified Auslese, and there's bright acidity beneath that keeps it very nicely balanced. Yum.


But... I though that Dönnhoff didn't age???? :twisted:

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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby David M. Bueker » Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:57 am

Mark...Mark...Mark...

You know that Kirschheck was never better than when it was a cask sample. It's all been downhill since it left the loving embrace of the producer's cellar. :twisted:
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Salil » Thu Mar 21, 2013 10:12 am

Bill Hooper wrote:As you know, it was a warm year and some of the wines were acidified. Some producers that I've talked with have (very candidly) expressed concerns that the wines are becoming disjointed and unbalanced and perhaps won't age very well. Interesting thoughts, but of course we'll have to approach each wine as individual and go from there. From my view, many of the 2009s that I tasted last year were completely shut-down. Some are starting to wake up tasting a bit more evolved than they should after only two years, but who knows. There isn't yet much experience with adding acid to wine in Germany. In 2003, many did not because they didn't know how, making 2009 in effect the first trial for that method for a lot of vintners. In 2011 acidification was probably carried-out with a lighter hand and therefore less impactful. We shall see.

Cheers,
Bill

Was the acidification prevalent throughout all the German regions, or just within Pfalz?

Had an 09 Dellchen GG a few months ago that was wonderful; stony, pure, very elegant and perfectly balanced. The handful of Mosels (from Meulenhof, Schaefer and Adam) that I've opened recently have given me nothing to be concerned about, other than that I maybe (yet, yet again) didn't buy enough 2009 Willi Schaefer.
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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Bill Hooper » Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:32 pm

Well, logically it would make more sense that producers who make wines with residual sugar would have more use for acidification, but it was allowed Europe-wide in 2009 so it is hard to say who did and who didn't and for which wines. Most producers downplay the topic.

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Re: WTN: Rebholz, Dönnhoff, de Montille

Postby Patrick Martin » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:29 pm

David M. Bueker wrote:Mark...Mark...Mark...

You know that Kirschheck was never better than when it was a cask sample. It's all been downhill since it left the loving embrace of the producer's cellar. :twisted:


Helmut Donnhoff doesn't even bother to seal his wine once in bottle except with a peal off tab, since it should be consumed immediately, right?
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