2012 Donnhoff: Hermannshohle, Brucke, Leistenberg & More

Posted by Joe Salamone

2012 Dönnhoff:
Leistenberg, Kirschheck, "Felsentürmchen," Brücke & Hermannshöhle
Special "Futures" Pricing

Few estates in Germany have enjoyed a reign at the top like Dönnhoff.

Every time I sit down to write about Dönnhoff it's impossible for me not to check out some blogs, goof off, do anything to avoid writing about Dönnhoff. It feels impossible to say anything new.

When you catch a Dönnhoff wine on, which is almost always the case, there's a magic to the way it delivers such polish, such style, such gorgeous proportions. All of this with a sense of weightless elegance.

Today, we're happy to present Dönnhoff's 2012s Kabinett through Auslese at special prearrival pricing.

Hermannshöhle Vineyard

2012 is a pure, bright, concentrated and--at this point--fairly shy vintage. They are tightly woven wines with an ultra-clear minerality that doesn't jump out at you. There's a sleek coolness to it. Think of a more powerful, deeper 2008. Today, the wines are really, really impressive, but like 08 I bet the wines will grow even more impressive with time. For me, this is a vintage to go deep on.

Dönnhoff's Leistenberg dramatizes the mineral signature of 2012. There's a pure, glistening quality of mineral, citrus, flower and precise stone fruits. The Kirchheck Spätlese also shows the ridiculous purity of the vintage, but delivers it with the site's signature cherry fruit notes. The "Felsentürmchen", from a choice section of Felsenberg, brings us back to an invigorating rocky and smoky minerality.

And finally, the heavy hitters... Brücke Spätlese is a mineral powerhouse. And both Hermannshöhle Spätlese and Auslese show the vast complexity and sense of completeness that make Dönnhoff's Hermannshöhle one of the most loved of Germany Rieslings.

Like I said at the beginning, Dönnhoff's long standing cult status speaks for itself. Of course, such a long established reputation means that quantities are always limited. 2012 seems poised to be one of the best vintages of the past decade, which means we advise that you stock up.

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

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits

2012 Dönnhoff

Oberhäuser Leistenberg Kabinett
Special Email Bottle Price: $22.53
John Gilman: "The 2012 Leistenberg Kabinett is really a superb wine, with its obvious Spätlese must weights delivered in a very classic Kabinett-like sensibility of filigree and lovely minerality. The beautifully complex nose offers up scents of white grape, pear, complex slate tones, a touch of petrol and a topnote of spring flowers. On the palate the wine is pure, medium-full and vibrant, with a succulent core of fruit, bright acids and outstanding length and grip on the nascently complex and dancing finish. The 2012 Leistenberg Kabinett will certainly be accessible from the start, but I would dry to give the wine at least five years in the cellar to really blossom and allow its secondary layers of complexity to fully emerge. A beautiful Kabinett in the more modern vein of climate change."

Norheimer Kirschheck Spätlese
Special Email Bottle Price: $34.23
John Gilman: "The 2012 Kirschheck Spätlese is a very pretty and ripe bottle, offering up an inviting bouquet of pear, peach, bee pollen, slate, lilacs and lovely, esthery topnotes. On the palate the wine is deep, fullish, complex and juicy, with a lovely core, crisp acids and superb length and grip on the pure and perfectly focused finish. This is not as filigreed as some Kirschheck Spätlesen can be, but it is very pretty in a more succulent style. Like the wine above, there will be no difficulties drinking this wine right from the outset, but I would be strongly inclined to give it a bit of bottle age to let some secondary complexity emerge. But, if you choose to drink this wine in the blush of youth, I will certainly understand why, as it is going to be pretty irresistible from the start. Fine, fine juice."

Schlossböckelheimer Felsenberg "Felsentürmchen" Spätlese
Special Email Bottle Price: $36.40
John Gilman: "The 2012 Türmchen" Spätlese is a very pretty wine, but it cannot quite keep pace with its 2011 counterpart. The wine offers up a bouquet of apple, white cherries, petrol, slate, bee pollen and a gently floral topnote of lilacs. On the palate the wine is medium-full, complex and youthful, with a fine core, good acids and a long, primary and promising finish. This is a very pretty wine that will need a good five years in the cellar to blossom and allow some of its secondary layers to emerge."

Oberhäuser Brücke Spätlese
Special Email Bottle Price: $44.20
John Gilman: "The 2012 Dönnhoff Brücke Spätlese is a beautifully inviting wine that is quite forward this year- at least by the very high standards for longevity of this bottling. The very classy nose offers up a mix of pear, tangerine, apple pie spice tones, slate, orange blossoms and bee pollen. On the palate the wine is deep, medium-full and suave, with lovely focus and nascent complexity, lovely mid-palate depth, bright acids and very good length and grip on the finish. A very pretty wine that will drink well with only a few years of bottle age, but will have no problems aging long and gracefully as well."

Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Spätlese
Special Email Bottle Price: $52.00
John Gilman: "The 2012 Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Spätlese from Weingut Dönnhoff is a beautiful wine in the making, wafting from the glass in a complex and very pure and elegant mélange of pear, white cherries, orange zest, slate, a touch of petrol, bee pollen and violets. On the palate the wine is medium-full, long, pure and nicely reserved, with a fine core, ripe acids and superb length and grip on the very refined and youthful finish. A gorgeous wine in the making, but again, there is even a tad more electricity to be found in the 2011 version."

Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Auslese (375ml)
Special Email Half-Bottle Price: $40.73
John Gilman: "As I noted in the article on the history of this great estate a few years ago, for Helmut Dönnhoff, any wine labeled as Auslese needs to be a botrytis wine by definition, and the 2012 Hermannshöhle Auslese contains about twenty percent botrytized berries this year. It is a stunningly pure and soil-driven example of Auslese, soaring from the glass in a vibrant and refined constellation of white cherries, candied violets, bee pollen, a touch of tangerine, slate and sweet grapefruit. On the palate the wine is medium-full, pure and stunningly complex and filigreed, with great purity and focus, ripe acids and superb length and grip on the dancing and magical finish. This is a great bottle of Auslese in the making."