2015 Schmelz Steinriegl Riesling Smaragd Wachau (Previously $29)

SKU #1280022

Schmelz is a small family run estate located in the heart of the Wachau in the small little village of Joching. They manage roughly 11 hectares of vineyards all with varying soils and microclimates which are composed of 60% Grüner Veltliner, 30% Riesling and rounded out with Sauvignon Blanc and Gelber Muskateller. The family has and continues to work under the philosophy that we live in a fragile environment and it should be treated accordingly. They use the knowledge of generations before while incorporating the techniques of today. They are also one of the founding members of the Vinea Wachau (a collaborative association aimed at ensuring quality).

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Staff Image By: Diana Turk | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/29/2016 | Send Email
Gorgeous orange blossom on the nose, with Meyer lemon fruit, bracing acid, surprisingly rich texture, and a dry, chalky finish – this is impressive. Singing with hints of river rock, honey, and intoxicating white floral, Schmelz Steinriegl is a complex and delicious addition to our Austrian Rieslings.

Staff Image By: Ivan Diaz | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/27/2016 | Send Email
Smaragd Riesling from Austria is some of my favorite wine in the world. The "Smaragd" designate implies a late harvest, about the same as a German "Spatlese" but without the residual sugar. This is dry but rich, opening up with a whiff of petrol followed by apricots, pears, candied apples, salty corn nuts, and refreshing seashell minerality. The acidity is cleansing and well-proportioned, and will help it age for longer than you'd expect. Try it with some sushi and be amazed!

Staff Image By: Jacques Moreira | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/27/2016 | Send Email
A great Riesling with beautiful notes of orange, honey, white flowers and even jasmine. Quite exotic! On the palate it is very crisp, fresh and absolutely delicious.

Staff Image By: Olivia Ragni | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/17/2016 | Send Email
The single vineyard Riesling from the Steinriegl vineyard comes from one of the few sites in Wachau that has special limestone silicate marble soils which Riesling thrives in. This terroir driven wine is aromatically captivating with notes of Meyer lemon, orange blossom, and beeswax beaming from the glass. On the palate, notes of river stones, white nectarine and chalk are coupled with racy acid, full body and a long, dry finish. This Riesling is gorgeous, and had the whole staff enamored.

Staff Image By: Lilia McIntosh | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/15/2016 | Send Email
Powerful and muscular dry Riesling. High in acidity and minerality with a lot of weight on the palate. Structured and rich with mostly citrus fruit and some herbs. This wine will age gracefully for many years.

Staff Image By: Mahon McGrath | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/9/2016 | Send Email
Splits the difference between wet slate, stone fruit, and sweet pea blossom. The fruit has intensity on the palate initially, but is abruptly shouldered aside by an inner citric energy, only coming back in faint, cool echoes in harmony with the minerality in the closing bars.

Staff Image By: Eric Story | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/8/2016 | Send Email
WOWZA! What a crazy combination of open knit stone fruit, spicy pears and rich mineral. The nose is open and seductive thanks to the wonderful 2015 vintage. The palate is still a bit tight and shy but you can feel the layers of texture right from the beginning and through the very end. Juicy and lengthy on the finish.

Additional Information:



- 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.