How much of an art is that of the winemaker in Germany? First one must deal with the far northern challenges of sun and cold. Then there are the regulatory boundaries, followed by the more granular catacombs of each vintage’s minor chaotic difficulties; frost, rain, hail, thunderstorms, to say nothing of the steep slatey land.
But through all of that is the grape itself. Ah, riesling, that most singular and misunderstood – if not misrepresented – iteration of vitus vinifera. Such a delight in all its forms.
* daydreaming of rieslings past, from Alsace to the Clare valley *
Riesling is one grape type that rides above many others. Because it grows in such tricky places and yet still manages to find itself made into an enormous range of wines, it’s easier to avoid it or, worse, dismiss entirely. I like her because she’s so easy to enjoy completely on her own terms, a kind of purity of intent; grapes, soil, weather, harvest, winemaking, aging.
That’s enough to be going on with. Nectarines, tennis ball, acids, summer fruits, acids, mild minerals, crisp sweetish lime, if not.