2010 Germano "Herzu" Riesling Langhe

SKU #1079867

The Germano winery is a few hundred yards north of Serralunga. Sergio Germano is typical of the new generation of producers in the Langhe; after completing six years of study at the school of Enology in Alba he made wine for a few years at Fontanafredda, one of the largest wineries in the area, before returning to the family winery in 1993. Germano's Riesling 'Herzu' is made from Sergio's newer vineyards in the village of Ciglié, about thirty minutes south of his estate in Serralunga. The Riesling is planted on a steep chalky south-east-facing hillside, perfect for white-grape-growing. Despite a few grams of residual sugar this comes across as dry on the palate, hints of lime-peel, wet stones, floral, very minerally. All stainless-steel fermentation and aging. 'Herzù' means 'steep' in the dialect of this village (yes, Piedmontese sometimes is that local).

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Price: $24.99
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By: John Majeski | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/1/2012 | Send Email
I first discovered this phenomenal Riesling at the expansive Tre Bicchieri tasting in San Francisco a few months ago, and found myself returning again and again to best imprint its absorbing flavors on my mind's palate. Oliver McCrum is a genius, no-holds-barred importer, who finds unique liquid gold in obscure regions of the Italian peninsula. Mineral-driven, fleshy, floral, evanescently sweet,voluptuous, this wine is simply put, a ravishing 'astonisher', worth a play on words and every polished bottle you can get your hands on.
Top Value!

By: Mike Parres | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/2/2012 | Send Email
Here is one of those wines that every vintage gives me a “Wow”… that’s better than last years. Yes, Riesling from Italy, ('Herzu' is made in a newer vineyard in the village of Ciglié, about thirty minutes south of their estate in Serralunga.), this very unique wine has melon and succulent fruit is the first thing to hit your palate then wet stones, floral ness and lots of mineralty on this Medium to full-bodied wine, it has incredible length to it as well and balanced with acidity. This is a great wine for light suppers, salads, pasta primavera or a chilled tomato basil soup or would love something spicy as well.

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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.


- Once named Enotria for its abundant vineyards, Italy (thanks to the ancient Greeks and Romans) has had an enormous impact on the wine world. From the shores of Italy, the Romans brought grapes and their winemaking techniques to North Africa, Spain and Portugal, Germany, France, the Danube Valley, the Middle East and even England. Modern Italy, which didn't actually exist as a country until the 1870s, once produced mainly simple, everyday wine. It wasn't until the 1970s that Italy began the change toward quality. The 1980s showed incredible efforts and a lot of experimentation. The 1990s marked the real jump in consistent quality, including excellence in many Region that had been indistinct for ages. The entire Italian peninsula is seeing a winemaking revolution and is now one of the most exciting wine Region in the world. For our entire Italian wine selection, click here. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of Italy.


- Piedmont is in the Northwestern region of Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. Piedmont is predominantly a plain where the water flows from the Swiss and French Alps to form the headwaters of the Po river. The major wine producing areas are in the southern portion of the region in the hills known as the "Langhe". Here the people speak a dialect that is 1/3 French and 2/3 Italian that portrays their historical roots. Their cuisine is one of the most creative and interesting in Italy. Nebbiolo is the King grape here, producing Barolo and Barbaresco. In addition, the Barbera and Dolcetto are the workhorse grapes that produce the largest quantity of wine. Piedmont is predominantly a red wine producing area. There are a few whites made in Piedmont, and the Moscato grape produces a large volume of sweet, semi-sweet and sparkling wines as well.