2011 Schloss Lieser: Final Chapter of the Razor's Edge

Posted by Joe Salamone

Final Chapter: The Razor's Edge
2011 Schloss Lieser "Grand Cru"
Dry Riesling Juffer Sonnenuhr GG
The Only Bottles in the Country

"The estate has been on quite a hot streak for the last several years, but these stunning 2011ers may well be the finest set of wines ever yet to set foot outside the very comfortable confines of this lovely property, as they are pure magic!"
-John Gilman, View from the Cellar

Today we present the grand, final chapter on what is perhaps the sharpest, most cutting collection of 2011.

If this is the winery's top bottling, it is also one of the rarest - in 2010 Lieser did not produce any "GG" from the Juffer Sonnenuhr.This offer has been two years in the making!

Few vineyards, few estates, can conceive of such a razor-sharp presentation of minerality and acidity. This is a daunting bottle of dry Riesling, a hammer of slate and citrus with incredible definition.

In the pantheon of dry Riesling, this is a bottle that truly stands next to the best that are currently being made in Germany (and beyond) - Klaus-Peter Keller's Absterde, Tim Fröhlich's Felseneck and even Trimbach's Clos Ste. Hune.

Juffer Sonnenuhr

For the moment, however, even Schloss Lieser's grandest dry bottling clocks in at considerably less than any of its peers.

This will change.

The Juffer is one of the Mosel's greatest sites and the Haags have been farming it for many, many years. In fact, it was really Thomas Haag's father, Wilhelm Haag, who solidified the reputation of this vineyard - he made some of the most epic bottlings of the 20th century. I still remember, very clearly, the butterscotch sunshine of a 1983 Fritz Haag Juffer Sonnenuhr Gold Capsule that we drank with Rudi Wiest many years ago.

Most of Thomas Haag's parcels are in fact from his father, from the Haag estate. It's hard to sum up the magic of the Juffer Sonnenuhr, the sweet spot of this massive wall of vines just across the Mosel River from the sleepy town of Brauneberg. The wines it produces are somehow very dense, powerful, yet fine - they retain a directness, a mouthfeel that is narrow and cutting.

It's a profile that Schloss Lieser is able, somehow, to only exaggerate. In 2011 especially, the dimension of the wine is emphasized, the fruit absolutely shimmering and multi-faceted, the cut and balance perfectly integrated.

This is an AWESOME bottle of dry Riesling and while the serious Riesling collectors will pounce - and go long if you can for the cellar - we seriously encourage all fans of Chablis, white Burgundy, Champagne, etc to try a bottle.

If you are not familiar with what great dry Riesling is capable of, this bottle will be a revelation.

Along with the growing critical praise, we've seen demand for Schloss Lieser skyrocket. By German wine law, the GGs cannot be released until the September after their vintage - yet every year the wines sell out earlier and earlier.

Even with quantities back to normal in 2011, we were told in late April that the wines were basically sold out. So, we did what anyone with half a palate and a love of German wine would do: We bought the rest.

Still, quantities are ridiculously limited so we advise dreaming big and expecting to be cut back, at least a bit.

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

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits