Magnificence from the Mosel

Vineyards of Weingut Willi Haag (Photo: Weingut Willi Haag)

One of the saddest wine statistics of all is the fact that Britain now imports more pinot gris than riesling from Germany. Taste either of the wonderful Mosel Auslesen reviewed below and you will understand what I mean. I feel fairly certain that no German pinot gris (often called grauburgunder or ruländer) could possibly rise to the heights of either riesling.

I am a big fan of Mosel riesling and sometimes miss the tighter, racier wines that were the norm a few decades ago when the world was a cooler place. However, I will concede that Mosel riesling is now more consistent than it has ever been even if the style has become slightly richer and riper.

The 2015 Bischöfliche Weingütter Trittenheimer Apotheke Auslese is from a very good vintage, generally regarded as superior to 2016, although there is some disagreement between wine critics about the relative merits of both. It’s certainly a delicious wine with terrific acid-and-sugar tension. Youthful and with potential. (NZD $48.75. 95 points)

The 2016 Willi Haag Juffer Sonnenuhr Brauneberg Auslese was my marginally preferred wine despite being from a reputedly lesser vintage. Willi Haag is certainly a great producer – perhaps when the going gets tough. This very vibrant riesling reminded me of the style of Mosel I enjoyed when I first fell in love with the region during a two-month visit many years ago. It will age magnificently! Thrilling wine. (NZD $49.75. 96 points)

Both are available from The Wine Importer in Auckland at bargain prices given the quality of each.

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