Founded by the late Daniel Rogov, focusing primarily on wines that are either kosher or Israeli.
User avatar
User

Daniel Rogov

Rank

Resident Curmudgeon

Posts

12957

Joined

Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:10 am

Location

Tel Aviv, Israel

Gunderloch: All Excellent, Some Heavenly

by Daniel Rogov » Thu May 28, 2009 2:21 pm

Yesterday (Wednesday, 27 May), I attended a press tasting of a variety of the Riesling wines of Gunderloch, the tasting hosted by the importer, Giaconda. The tasting took place at Tel Aviv's Catit, unquestionably one of the very best restaurants in the country and lunch was served (more on that on a separate post later today). The guest of honor at the tasting was Mr. Friz Hasselbach, a member of the owning family of Gunderloch and the winery's winemaker. Frankly, the tasting was an excellent one, the foods served carefully selected to match the wines, and because I was seated between the importers and Mr. Hasselbach, I had ample opportunity for discussion and even a few friendly challenges.

One of those challenges related to the screwcaps that have been used on the Gunderloch wines for the past three years. My experience with Gunderloch wines goes back many years, and many of their best wines are capable of aging anywhere from 35-50 years (and in a few cases, even longer). My question remains – will screwcaps allow that long-term cellaring? I shall most surely not be here in another 50 years, but I do intend to follow the issue even more closely now, for Gunderloch is certainly one of the world's best producers to have made the switchover. As Curnonsky's last words on his death bed were "Never serve the left leg of a partridge because that is the leg on which it stands and the muscles are too tough", perhaps my own will be about screwcaps. What the heck, I'd love to go out in such a romantic fashion.

For those who do not know Giaconda, best way to order is directly. A discount is given to "members" of their internet site. Membership is free and carries no strings whatever. Best way to join is to visit their site at http://www.giaconda.co.il . Some of the wines were brought specifically for the tasting and are not available locally. Those wines that are available are so noted by their prices being cited.

As to Gunderloch, located in the Rheinhessen area of Germany (think of the charming road along the banks of the Rhine that goes from Weisbaden to Koln), and founded in 1890, perhaps the first thing to be said is that their wines not infrequently earn scores of between 95 and 99, their several (especially their Trockenbeerenauslese and Beerenauslese wines from the Nackenheim Rothenberg vineyard) even attaining the much desired score of 100.

Perhaps also worthy of note is that when wood is used the winery turns primarily to neutral oak casks (that is to say, oak that has been used for anywhere from 10 – 100 years, the goals being not so much "wood influence" as a guarding of natural flavors and an allowing for the natural micro-oxidation that takes place through wood. Those caring to read more about Gunderloch can find their internet site in both German and English at http://www.gunderloch.de

The tasting notes are given in the order that the wines were presented at the tasting. My thanks to Anat and Rafaella and to Mr. Hasselbach for an excellent and fascinating tasting as well as to chef Meir Adoni who served up a light meal that highlighted his talents in many ways.


Best
Rogov

Gunderloch, Riesling, Trocken, Rheinhessen, 2007: Light but shining golden in color, opening with a nose of green apples and the barest hint of petrol, opening in the glass to reveal aromas and flavors of peaches, nectarines and spiced pears. Crisply dry, with fine balancing acidity. Light- to medium-bodied, seems almost to float on the palate. Drink now-2011. NIS 80. Score 88. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Trocken, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Grand Cru, Rheinhessen, 2007: Dark golden straw in color, medium-bodied, with a rich presence of minerality and finely tuned acidity to highlight a rich array of white peach, green apple and aromas and flavors, all coming together as an elegant and coherent whole. On the super long finish a tantalizing hint of anise. Approachable and thoroughly enjoyable now but best 2011-2018. NIS 260. Score 93. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Trocken, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Rheinhessen, 2005: The color of damp straw, with traditional mineral and peach aromas and flavors matched nicely by notes of grapefruit, tropical fruits and spring flowers. Long, elegant and satisfying Drink now-2012. Score 91. (Tasted 27 May 2009).

Gunderloch, Riesling, Kabinett, Jean-Baptiste, Rheinhessen, 2007: Light gold with bare peach-pink blush reflections, with a gently frizzante note, showing a tantalizing array of peach, orange, tropical fruits and green apple flavors. Rich and well balanced, catregorized as dry but with a most appealing light hint of sweetness that lingers nicely on a long finish. Drink now-2011. NIS 90. Score 89, (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Auslese, Drei Sterne, Rheinhessen, 2007: Fermented with wild yeasts, with no botrytis impact, a medium-bodied, moderately sweet wine that opens to show rich and aromatic, with appealing summer fruits, mango and minerals on the nose and palate. Long and generous. Approachable and enjoyable now but best 2011-2015. NIS 235. Score 91. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Auslese, Drei Sterne, Rheinhessen 2006: Light in color but showing surprising depth of both sweetness and fruits. Late-harvested but with no botrytis impact, showing clean crisp pineapple, apple and flinty mineral notes. Drink now-2013. Score 90. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Auslese, Drei Sterne, Rheinheesen, 2000: Fully mature, the once light gold now taking on a bronzed note,and showing Riesling petrol notes along with ripe summer fruits and a generous overlay of orange marmalade. Deep and long, its generous sweetness balanced nicely by crisp acidity. Lovely now but not for further cellaring. Drink now. Score 91. (Re-tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Auslese, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Goldkapsel, Rheinhessen, 2002: No question but that from the first exploration of the nose to the super-long finish this is a breathtakingly exquisite and deeply botrytis-impacted wine. Opens with mangos and pineapples on the nose and palate, goes on to peaches, apricots, and grapefruit, all on a mineral-richbackground. Long and remarkably lively, its sweetness in fine balance and leading to a finish that seems to go on forever. Drink now-2022, perhaps longer. Score 96. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Auslese, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Goldkapsel, Rheinhessen, 2007: Packed with botrytis, dark golden in color, a full-bodied, almost thick wine opening with fresh ripe apricots and candied citrus peel, those going on to reveal richly honeyed dried summer fruits on generously spicy background. Deep, almost intense sweetness set off and balanced by lively acidity, a wine so concentrated at this stage that it seems to pour slowly from the bottle. Approachable and exquisite now but given time for its elements to knit together it will show even better. Best from 2014-2050. NIS 360. Score 97. .(Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Beerenauslese, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Rheinhessen, 2004: A wine whose beauty makes you catch your breath and then makes you move away to contemplate. Deep bronzed gold in color, concentrated, potent and intense but with remarkable elegance. Opens in the glass to show deep botrytis funkiness supporting summer fruits, pineapple, honeyed and mineral notes. Long and generous. If you serve this with a dessert make it either a fine vanilla ice cream or a mahlabi. Drink now-2045. Score 99. (Tasted 27 May 2009)

Gunderloch, Riesling, Trockenbeerenauslese, Nackenheim Rothenberg, Rheinhessen, 2004: A wine that stands comfortably alongside the very best dessert wines ever made anywhere. Bronzed gold in color, with generous botrytis influence, a full-bodied and intense wine that despite its concentrations seems to float on the palate. On the nose and palate layer after layer of dried apricots and peaches, spring flowers, eucalyptus honey and, spices, all lingering on and on seemingly without end. Do yourself a favor and do not serve this one as an accompaniment to dessert. This should be the dessert course in and of its own. Alas, this one will be around long after I have shed this mortal coil. Drink now-2070. Score 100. (Tasted 27 May 2009)
no avatar
User

Michael Mortensen

Rank

Wine geek

Posts

30

Joined

Wed Feb 04, 2009 10:55 am

Re: Gunderloch: All Excellent, Some Heavenly

by Michael Mortensen » Thu May 28, 2009 4:07 pm

Great notes. I completely agree that Gunderloch makes fantastic wines. Now, please taste through the Weingut Keller portfolio, so we can break that 110-point barrier. Well, maybe only 105...

/Michael
User avatar
User

Doug Z

Rank

Ultra geek

Posts

392

Joined

Thu Jul 10, 2008 4:11 am

Re: Gunderloch: All Excellent, Some Heavenly

by Doug Z » Sun May 31, 2009 11:04 am

Drink now-2070.


any wiggle room on that? stretch it to 2100?

i think buying a wine for the 22nd century would be neat...a la "honi hameagel" ...

"He came across a man who was planting a carob tree. "Hey there," he called out. "Tell me," said Honi. "This carob tree that you're planting, how long will it take until it grows carobs?"

The man scratched his head and looked at Honi.

"Well, it'll take 70 years until this tree grows fruit," he said.

"What a waste of time," said Honi. "You'll never eat from this tree. Why bother planting it?"

"Oh, I don't know," said the tree planter. "I'm not planting this for myself. I'm planting it for my children and their children."
"I don't know much about classical music. For years I thought the Goldberg Variations were something Mr. and Mrs. Goldberg did on their wedding night." Woody Allen
User avatar
User

Daniel Rogov

Rank

Resident Curmudgeon

Posts

12957

Joined

Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:10 am

Location

Tel Aviv, Israel

Re: Gunderloch: All Excellent, Some Heavenly

by Daniel Rogov » Sun May 31, 2009 11:12 am

Doug Z wrote:...I think buying a wine for the 22nd century would be neat...



Doug, Hi....

Not taking any credit from Gunderloch, if its the next century you're thinking of consider 2003 d'Yquem:

Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes, 2003: On of those Yquem wines that is destined to be among the immortals. Full-bodied, with generous botrytis influence, honeyed dried apricots and apples and fresh pineapple, those matched beautifully by hints of baked pie crust and a light peppery-spicy sensation that runs through and then lingers on and on, seemingly without end. Superb even at this stage but best only starting in 2015-2020. Keeping in mind that the 1847 and 1921 wines are still drinking mangificiently and the 1986 and 1989 wines are still in their infancy I would have no fear whatever as to how long the wine is cellarable. This is one that will comfortably outlive everyone alive today. Score 100. (Tasted 23 Mar 2006)

Best
Rogov
User avatar
User

Daniel Rogov

Rank

Resident Curmudgeon

Posts

12957

Joined

Fri Jul 04, 2008 3:10 am

Location

Tel Aviv, Israel

Re: Gunderloch: All Excellent, Some Heavenly

by Daniel Rogov » Sun May 31, 2009 11:46 am

Michael Mortensen wrote:Great notes. I completely agree that Gunderloch makes fantastic wines. Now, please taste through the Weingut Keller portfolio, so we can break that 110-point barrier. Well, maybe only 105...



Indeed Weingut Keller does some fantastic wines! Interestingly, brought to Israel by the same importer - Giaconda. My most recent Keller tastings were about 18 months ago. Hope to do more in the near future....

Best
Rogov

Weingut Keller, Riesling, von der Fels, Rheinhessen, 2005: Oh what a lovely wine! Opens lightly frizzante if served a bit over-chilled (not to fear, as that adds charm), and goes on to show citrus peel, lime, grapefruit and minerals along with a hint of just-ripe-enough peaches on the long, generous finish. NIS 209. Drink now-2010. Score 92. (Tasted 7 Sep 2006)

Weingut Keller, Rieslaner, Auslese, Monsheimer Silbergerg, Florsheim, Rheinhessen, 2005: No reason to be embarrassed if you've never heard of the Rieslaner grape which is a cross between Riesling and Silvaner grown primarily in Pfalz and Rheinhessen almost entirely for sweet dessert wine production … and this one is phenomenal. Full-bodied, ith unabashed honeyed and dried summer fruit sweetness in this concentrated and elegant wine and with generous acidity to balance the sweetness. As the wine opens on the palate look for aromas ad flavors of guavas, pineapple, and roasted breadfruit all backed up by spices that play on and fascinate the palate. NIS 269 for a 375 ml. bottle. Score 95. Drinking well even now but don't hesitate to cellar this one for 10-15 years, perhaps even longer. (Tasted not only not blind but together with bread, butter and cheeses and I have no complaints about that whatever, 7 Sep 2006)

Weingut Keller, Riesling Auslese ***, Dalsheimer Hubacker, 2002, Rheinhessen: Full-bodied, intense and mouth-filling but with the kind of elegance that will take your breath away. Opens on the palate with summer fruits and minerals, those turning on the palate to tropical fruits and a light spiciness, the flavors and aromas coming together in ways that cannot help but fascinate and then with a super-long finish. Approachable and enjoyable now but best from 2010-2025. Score 95. (Tasted 18 Jan 2006)

Weingut Keller, Riesling Auslese, *** Westhofener Morstein, Rheinhessen, 2004: A winery that continue to amaze with its quality and individualistic wines. Generous sweetness on this full-bodied wine along with generous hints of botrytis spices and funkiness, those coming together with white peach, apricot, citrus peel and tropical fruits that play beautifully on the nose and palate. Long, generous and with elegance on the truly grand scale. Approachable now but best 2010-2025. Score 95. (Tasted 29 Jun 2006)

Weingut Keller, Riesling, von der Fels, Trocken, Rheinhessen, 2005: As it was at an earlier tasting just a year ago (7 Sep 2006), a lovely wine! Opens lightly frizzante if served a bit over-chilled (not to fear, as that adds charm), and goes on to show citrus peel, lime, grapefruit and minerals along with a hint of just-ripe-enough peaches on the long, generous finish. NIS 209. Drink now-2010. Score 92. (Re-tasted 3 Sep 2006)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests

Powered by phpBB ® | phpBB3 Style by KomiDesign