2009 Tegernseerhof Loibenburg Riesling Smaragd Wachau

SKU #1113119 91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Pale green-yellow. The nose makes an exotic impression with scents of orange zest and passion fruit complicated by lichee and wild mint. Racy acidity lends an elegant, delineated structure to this powerful riesling. Crisp apple and white vineyard peach linger long and brisk on the finish. Drink now through 2019.  (4/2011)

K&L Notes

From the winery: "The first mention of Loibenberg is dating back to 1253. At that time, actually with the title "first vineyard in Austria" and in addition also the largest single individual crus of the Wachau. A characteristic of the Loibenberg is that it is not criss-crossed by ditches or valleys. The naked, bare primary rock forms the typical characteristics however, loess was fanned in some bays and valleys. The varying altitude, changing soil and the small scale structure of the vineyards makes the Loibenberg one of the most inhomogeneous crus of the Wachau. Barren, craggy structure - under enormous pressure over 500 million years built to gneiss and weathered to primary rock soil - this is the ground on which the Riesling on Loibenberg expresses its filigree elegance and subtle minerality. Late ripening grapes can be found on the top of the stone terraces, which produce an enormous fruity spiciness by a long-ripening on the vine. Precision, nerve, linear structure, deep fruit, and above all the eloquence of Riesling from Loibenberg describe this best!"

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Price: $34.99
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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.


- Austria is a well-respected wine-growing region in Europe. Yet, even though they make about a third the volume of wine as Germany, not many of these fine bottles make it to the shelves of American wine merchants or restaurants. Lucky for us, their anonymity has translated into incredible value from simple, everyday whites to exquisite dessert wines. Austria shares many grape varieties with Germany—Riesling is king here, too. But the style of Austrian whites is much dryer and more potent. Grüner Veltliner is Austria's second-most-important varietal and makes whites of great versatility and pleasure. Click for a list of bestselling items from Austria.