Tag Archives: kurt hain

2010 Kurt Hain Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Riesling Spätlese Grauschiefer

2010 Kurt Hain Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Spätlese Grauschiefer

2010 Kurt Hain Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Spätlese Grauschiefer

The second and final German wine we tried after our Finger Lakes Tasting was this Spätlese by Kurt Hain. Regular readers should by now be familiar with this winery, despite the fact that the wines are practically impossible to find in the US. At one point, Gernot Hain, the winemaker and current owner, told me that he saw no need to export because he was able to sell all his wines in Germany…

Let me give you some background (cobbled together from earlier posts):

The winery is located in Piesport, home of the Goldtröpfchen (literally “Gold droplets”). People in the United States mostly know the ubiquitous Piesporter Michelsberg, a cheap and sweet wine. That, unfortunately, is the least appealing vineyard in Piesport. Unlike the other Piesport vineyards Goldtröpfchen, Domherr and Falkenberg, it is not located on the Northern side of the Mosel, where it would get full sun exposure all day, but on the South bank of the river, in flat terrain that used to be farmland and was not used for growing wines until a couple of decades ago. The Goldtröpfchen, in contrast, features steep vineyards and some of the best wineries all have holdings there. Another thing one should know is that the Goldtröpfchen used to be much smaller and was extended significantly under the German Wine Act of 1971 (as happened to most well known vineyard sites in Germany).

Steep vineyards in the Goldtröpfchen

Steep vineyards in the Goldtröpfchen

The winery Kurt Hain has been one of my favorite wineries in the Mosel village of Piesport. Gernot Hain, the winemaker (follow the link for a photo and his philosophy), has been making high quality wines for quite a bit now, and they rarely fail to impress me. They have a balance and sophistication about them that just draws you in. There is someone who knows exactly what he is doing…and he is doing it remarkably well. Whenever I want to really impress friends that are not very familiar with German wines, I pull out one of his bottles. They hardly ever fail to make their point.

Hanging out with Gernot Hain

Hanging out with Gernot Hain

2010 was what many people called the crazy vintage along the Mosel: Lots of acidity and lots of sugar led to levels of each that were puzzling to many winemakers. It wasn’t easy to make great wines in that vintage but those who succeeded made wines that are to die for. They have all the beauty of ripe grapes, but then take you away with their rather racy acidity. It is unclear how they will age, but they are still drinking phenomenally right now!

But to the wine, one of two of Kurt Hain Spätlesen from the Goldtröpfchen. Gernot selects the grapes from different holdings in the vineyard that have different soil types, namely grey and red slate (Grauschiefer and Rotschiefer). He used to give them numbers to distinguish but as of late has started just putting Grauschiefer or Rotschiefer on the label which helps a lot (I am numerically illiterate). This wine was a Grauschiefer, so grey slate soils. In the glass, it had a great, light yellow color. In the nose, there was a combination of citrus and honey, with underlying white peach aroma. Just as gorgeous as a Mosel Riesling can be. On the palate, it was a classic, exciting 2010: light to medium-bodied, sweet. But boy was the sweetness carried by wonderful acidity that kept it fresh and enticing. The acidity never dominated the wine, just gave it structure. Stunning in its balance and fruit. Very long, lingering finish. Just an excellent piece of work.

I tried a 2007 vintage of this wine last year, the review is here.

The best thing, though, was the reaction by The Drunken Cyclist, whose Twitter post I am sharing here:

You’re welcome! :)

Tagged , , , , , ,

2007 Kurt Hain Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Riesling Spätlese #13

Last Friday, we were invited for a BBQ in the park. It was a gorgeous day, we were playing soccer with our friends’ kids, awesome meat on the grill. Nina and I have been on a slow mission to get our friend who hosted this hooked to German rieslings…so, naturally we brought a bottle to share.

The winery Kurt Hain has been one of my favorite wineries in the Mosel village of Piesport, home to the very renown vineyard “Goldtroepfchen” (literally: “droplets of gold”). Gernot Hain, the winemaker (follow the link for a photo and his philosophy), has been making high quality wines for quite a bit now, and they rarely fail to impress me. They have a balance and sophistication about them, that just draws you in. There is someone who knows exactly what he is doing…and he is doing it remarkably well. Gernot also plays in the Weinelf, Germany’s “national” soccer team composed of winemakers (yes, they exist!).

Now, the wine we brought was the 2007 Piesporter Goldtroepfchen Spaetlese #13. It was in our stash that we brought over from Germany when we moved to Ann Arbor. We felt it was the right time and moment to try it now. In following posts, I will give you more background on how to read a German winelabel etc., suffice it to know for now that this is a riesling with rather high residual sugar made from quality grapes.

Note how beautiful the bottle is. Gernot’s wines tend to be bottled in longer-neck bottles which make them look way more fancy and elegant.

The wine itself had aged beautifully. A lot of people are not aware of the fact that you can age rieslings for a quite a while, the low yielding top of the spectrum for many many decades, but spaetlesen like this can hold on for 20 to 30 years no problem…when the wines are younger, their fruity smells and tastes tend to dominate, while in later years, the sugar and acidity balance each other out more.

The wine had retained its beautiful, lighter than straw color.  When we tried it, it still tasted refreshingly fruity, but you could tell that it was already moving on to the next stage of its existence, with less pronounced fruit and a tad more alcoholic taste. The acidity was doing a jumpy tap dance over the sweetness on my tongue. It was hilarious. And what I loved most, this fun taste lingered and lingered and lingered…too bad it was our last bottle.

Unfortunately, Kurt Hain does not export to the US. His listed importer went bust a while back. For European readers: You can contact the winery for a price list here. I am sure they can ship within Europe without a problem.

Tagged , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: