2008 Joh. Jos. Prüm Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Spätlese

SKU #1053765

91 points Wine Spectator: "Elegant, packed with slate, vanilla, lime and apple aromas and flavors. A touch reduced in aroma, but lively and intense, with a lip-smacking finish. Best from 2012 through 2024." (11/09) 91 points Stephen Tanzer's IWC: "Apricot pit, lime zest and clove on the nose. The delicate nectarine fruit and creamy texture are held aloft by nutmeg and mineral salts. Finishes bright, lively and satisfying, with a spicy character provided by the slate." (Jan/Feb 10) Just upstream from the famed Wehlener Sonnenuhr is the Graacher Himmelreich. With deeper, richer soils, this site is a little less steep and its south-west exposure ensures the wines from this site always have a racy and juicy acid background that really make the wines sing. The 2008 vintage at the Joh Jos Prum estate provided yet another fantastic vintage for Kabinett and Spatlese level wines, with a small amount of Auslese as well. The wines of the 2008 vintage are showing vibrant and juicy acidity levels with bright and expressive aromatics and flavor profiles. They seem to a bit more wound up and tighter than the '07s and may need a bit more time in bottle to show what they really have to offer. It is an elegant and attractive vintage highlighting the Kabinett and Spatleses with lighter, sleeker and more charming versions of Auslese.

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Price: $39.99
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Varietal:

Riesling

- 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 Pr├Ądikat levels to describe their ripeness at harvest. These are: Kabinett, Sp├Ątlese, 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.
Country:

Germany

- Thanks to a recent string of excellent vintages and to the reemergence of Germany onto the international wine writing scene, this is a country that's hot, hot, hot! Germany is divided into 13 wine Region and produces a very wide variety of wine styles, from incredibly high-acid, dry wines to some of the sweetest, most unctuous concoctions on the planet and even a few surprisingly hearty reds. Most of the highest-quality wines are grown on steep banks along the rivers in these Region. Small vineyards are still mostly hand tended and picked, due to the difficult nature of mechanization on these slopes. White wine production accounts for nearly 80% of the total with Riesling being the most important varietal, though Muller-Thurgau is still more widely planted.
Sub-Region:

Mosel-Saar-Ruwer