End of the Year: We look back at how off-dry Riesling fared in 2014 and share our list of highlights from the vintage.
The Mosel Vintage 2014 proved a remarkably contrasted vintage with true strokes of genius right next to the ordinary (to remain polite). Never have we experienced such a huge diversity in quality and style as in 2014.
The spreading of botrytis and rot after the first days of October made it quite a task to produce great off-dry Riesling in 2014. As a result, “smaller” wines proved better balanced than more ambitious ones at many Estates, simply because these were harvested earlier, i.e. from healthier fruit.
However, some outstanding off-dry Riesling was produced (more than off dry Riesling), as a light touch of sweetness proved perfect to balance out the zesty acidity and to provide for a very often just dry-tasting experience. Also, the need to select out or be very careful with botrytis led most Estates to produce off-dry Riesling with refreshingly moderate alcohol levels.
Several Estates excelled at this style in 2014, producing several vintage highlights. This includes Julian Haart, Weingut Lubentiushof, Günther Steinmetz and Van Volxem. All these Estates are renowned for transcending the legal limit to Trocken and have become masters at producing just gorgeously dry-tasting wines. Their 2014 wines underlines this nicely.
However, we could not complete this little summary without stressing the mind-blowing performance in 2014 of young upcoming star Stefan Steinmetz. None less than five of his Günther Steinmetz wines are among the vintage highlights! Overall, it produced no less than 15 outstanding wines. This is truly remarkable.
Also worth underlining is the outstanding performance of Lubentiushof, an Estate which is probably less known to many. After its stunning 2013 and 2014 wines, we doubt that it will remain ‘less-know’ for long.
Here our list of not-to-be-missed "Vintage Highlights":
More than for any other recent vintage, tasting before buying or reading what the wines taste like is critical to find the jewels in the 2014 vintage as wine styles range from clean over tropical to possibly downright “off.” Buying blind is never a good idea, it is downright suicidal in 2014.
Our Reports on the 2014 vintage with over 650+ detailed tasting notes of recommended wines from 70 different Estates may help you navigate through the offers.
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© Text by Mosel Fine Wines "The Independent Review of Mosel Riesling ... and beyond!"
Disclaimer: Mosel Fine Wines is an independent publication and has no commercial relationship with any Estate, association or organization featured in this article.