2009 Fritz Haag & Zilliken: German "Futures" Continue...

Posted by CrushWine

The Crush 5th Annual
German "Futures" Campaign Continues...
2009 Zilliken - 2009 Fritz Haag
Special "Futures" Pricing Ends Wednesday, July 7th

"The 2009ers from Hanno and Dorothy Zilliken are absolutely monumental and strong candidates for the greatest set of wines to be found in Germany in this vintage."
John Gilman, View from the Cellar

Gilman doesn't have glorious words for Fritz Haag, but only because he didn't visit the estate. I didn't visit the estate either, but I did taste the wines at the Mainzer Weinbörse and then again in NYC and they are very, very good. (More below.)

Yes, 2009 is (another) glorious vintage in Germany... sorry!

The 2009 vintage in Germany is ripe, yet very clear, which for me makes a big difference. The fruit is super pure with really impressive concentrations, extract that coats the palate. The great estates found a ton of minerality as well as wicked-beautiful acidities, stern headmasters that whip everything into shape.

Although it's obviously much too early to know for sure, 2009 may very well be a great vintage on par with 2007. While I truly don't want to hype the vintage or blow it out of proportion, I also don't want to undersell it, to meagerly bow to the impressive statistics of the 2007ers, with their already-lofty reputations.

The simple formula many winemakers present is the following: 2009 = 2007 + 2008. Which means, 2009 has some of the ripeness and volume of 2007 with some of the cut and rigor of 2008. (Click here for the full story, the Crush 2009 Vintage Report - it has been updated with a number of estates from the Mosel.)

Today we continue our 2009 German "Futures" campaign with two blue-chip estates: Zilliken in the Saar and Fritz Haag in the Middle Mosel.

Zilliken deserves a special call-out. When Hanno Zilliken was asked what he thought of the 2009s, he said, "Reminds me of my 1983s." Those of you who know Hanno's 1983s understand the weight of this sentiment. I tasted with him at the Mainzer Weinbörse - and while it's often difficult to focus at such events, I visited Hanno early, long before the crowds. We had plenty of space and a long time to talk, which was nice... because the wines are stunning: The Saar is without a doubt one of the highlights of the vintage. Stock up. (Hanno and family pictured above.)

Fritz Haag also delivered another beautiful performance; the crystal-clear fruit of the vintage suits the Fritz Haag style of ghostly elegance, grace and delineation perfectly. The wines were lovely when I tasted in Germany, yet I was even more impressed when I tasted them again in New York. They are developing nicely. If my gut says these will not reach the heights of the 2007ers, I have to remind myself that my gut is often wrong. We'll have to see - given the track record of this estate, its sort of flawless record of perfection, I would expect very grand things from this collection.

Pricing, again, is about as sharp as you're ever going to see it - the Euro's troubles over the last few months have made it a very good time to buy. Please note: Special pricing ends next Wednesday, July 7th.

Remember: This is just the beginning. Our German program has developed significantly and this year we will be presenting a number of bottlings you will only find here, from Schloss Lieser, Willi Schaefer, A.J. Adam and many more... so stay tuned. To see our entire 2009 German collection, click here.

To order, email us at offers@crushwineco.com or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Stephen Bitterolf
Wine Director
Crush Wine & Spirits

2009 Zilliken and 2009 Fritz Haag

2009 Zilliken Saarburger Rausch Kabinett

View from the Cellar: "The 2009 Rausch Kabinett is perhaps the greatest young Kabinett that I have ever tasted from Hanno Zilliken. The wine contains an amazing seventy grams per liter of residual sugar, and yet tastes quite dry, as the acids here are more than formidable. The bouquet is deep and stunning, as it delivers a great mélange of pineapple, orange, petrol, crystalline expressions of slate soil and a vibrant topnote of citrus zest. On the palate the wine is deep, medium-full, long and snappy, with a great core of fruit, beautiful focus and balance and simply stunning length and grip on the very long, intense and extremely transparent finish. Again, the requirement of at least Spätlese level must weights have really ratcheted up the intensity here to unprecedented heights, without sacrificing any of the dancing filigree that is great Kabinett. A simply brilliant wine.."

2009 Zilliken Saarburger Rausch Spätlese

View from the Cellar: "There will be two Spätlesen this year from the Rausch- a normal bottling and one reserved for the auctions in Trier. This is the “regular” bottling, but there is nothing ordinary about this absolutely brilliant Spätlese, as it soars from the glass in a blaze of lime, oranges, fresh apricot, citrus zest, floral tones crystalline slate and just the faintest whisperings of the petrol to come with bottle age. On the palate the wine is medium-full, crisp and dancing, with beautiful mid-palate depth, flawless balance, snappy acids and stunning length and grip on the effortless finish. A great, great wine."

2009 Zilliken Saarburger Rausch Auslese

View from the Cellar: "The 2009 Rausch Auslese is one of those beautifully balanced, ripe Auslesen that does not show a lot of botrytis character and should age into an absolutely beautiful bottle. The bouquet is deep and very minerally, as it offers up scents of pineapple, lemon, slate, bee pollen, citrus blossoms and white cherries. On the palate the wine is deep, fullish and very long and pure, with complex, juicy acids, excellent focus and mid-palate depth and excellent length and grip on the vibrant and scintillating finish. Hanno notes that this was made with fifty percent botrytized grapes, but the glaze here is very delicate at this point in the wine’s evolution and will probably always play a supporting role to the beautiful, “golden berry” character of this Auslese."

2009 Fritz Haag Brauneberger Kabinett

You couldn’t get more Middle Mosel, more 2009. Juicy and ripe, for sure rounder and more elegant than say, Schloss Lieser. Exceedingly dense with green citrus, a fine display of slate and great balance. Very fine.

2009 Fritz Haag Brauneberger Juffer-Sonnenuhr Spätlese

Deep and clear – incredible concentration. While I should probably like the Kabinett better, the Spätlese was on just perfect form and completely compelling. This is bulbous, I mean the mid-palate is ripe with fruit, curvaceous with green apple, pears and lime zest, but there is plenty of slate and flowers to convey freshness, movement, energy. Beautiful juice.

2009 Fritz Haag Brauneberger Juffer-Sonnenuhr Auslese

This bad boy clocks in with about 10% botrytis (2009 was not much of a botrytis year), using it more as a nuance to the fruit than as a discernible flavor element in its own right. Which is to say this is clear as all get out, opulence with clarity, which in an Auslese is very good. Hauntingly fresh and pure, again an easy grace, a simple sort of perfection - that trademark Fritz Haag delineation and balance. Very good.

Wine is Pre-arrival
NET | No Further Discount