Yesterday, my wife and I celebrated our wedding anniversary at Das Goldstein by Gollner’s near Wiesbaden. They happen to have a stellar wine cellar with a correspondingly good wine menu from which we picked this sweet Riesling Auslese to go along with our dinner.
Weingut Künstler is a long-standing winery from Hochheim in the Rheingau. Today, the estate is run by Gunter Künstler. Künstler cultivates a total of over 50 hectares, of which around 40 hectares are planted with Riesling. Hochheimer Hölle is a VDP-classified Große Lage (“grand cru”) and is certainly one of the estate’s best Riesling sites. The soil is characterised by heavy clay and produces correspondingly powerful wines.
Rich, yellow colour. Slightly ethereal on the nose with smoky minerality. Above this lies an animating, ripe yellow fruit. On the palate, the 2015 Hochheimer Hölle Auslese is powerful and juicy with ripe fruit: Apricot, orange and pineapple. The sweetness is flanked by a well-integrated acidity. Candied lemons. This tastes very fine and lasts long on the palate. A great Auslese that can age for many more years.
Drink through 2040.
Tasted by Dominik Müller on Sunday, 20 August 2023.
91Wines with a rating of DM91 to DM93 are exceptionally good. These are wines that are not just well-made but which have a character of their own that makes them stand out. These wines offer a level of complexity that we can spend a long time with if we want to. In WSET terms, wines with a DM91 rating tend to be at the lower end of a 3.0 WSET score./ 100
3.0Wines with a 3.0 WSET rating are clearly 'very good' wines according to the WSET scoring system, where we consider balance (B), intensity (I), length (L) and complexity (C). In terms of my personal rating system, wines with a WSET score of 3.0 usually get 91 to 92 DM points./ 4.0
4Wines with a rating of 4 stars are excellent wines in their category. They are almost at the top of their peer group in terms of quality./ 5
Jasper Morris of InsideBurgundy.com inspired me to use his 'Five Star Scale' in my tasting notes, too. The limitation of the standard 100-point scale is that in certain appellation hierarchies, such as Burgundy village versus premier cru, the lower-end wines will typically score less than the wines higher up the hierarchy. The five star scale therefore wants to compare a wine to its peers from the same category. It allows for very well-made wines to stand out.
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