2012 Donnhoff Part II: The Grand Cru DRY SIDE

Posted by Joe Salamone

2012 Dönnhoff PART II:
Grand Cru Dry Rieslings
"Felsentürmchen", Dellchen
& Hermannshöhle
Essays in Purity

If you were to survey the Crush team about their most memorable German dry wines, Dönnhoff would come up again and again.

There was a bottle of '04 Hermannshöhle GG opened at the end of a staff tasting a few years ago that's legendary. The same goes for an '01 Spätlese Hermannshöhle Trocken that kicked off a Chinese BYO dinner.

Without a doubt, Dönnhoff's Grosses Gewächs can go toe-to-toe with the best of the genre.

Today, we're happy to offer Dönnhoff's 2012 Grosses Gewächs collection at special pre-arrival pricing.

The hallmark of Dönnhoff's Grosses Gewächs is the sleek precision and polished minerality with an elegance and length that can be heartbreaking.

2012 was a very good year for dry wines and especially for Dönnhoff. There's good ripeness, brisk acids and pristine (botrytis-free) grapes. The wines boast good concentration, nervy backbones and a really beautiful clarity.

Hermannshöhle Vineyard

To get into the specific Grosses Gewächs "Felsentürmchen," a choice sub-parcel of Schlossbockelheimer Felsenberg, it delivers a really impressive combination of smoky minerality, citrus and floral top notes. Terry Theise sums it up nicely when he writes, "taste this for an exegesis of porphyry flavor."

The Delchen GG promises to unfold into a really impressive edition of this wine. It's always a fairly shy wine in its youth, but it's already showing the deep and powerful minerality that the finest examples of this wine possess.

Finally, there's the Hermannshöhle GG. Here's where so much comes together into a seamless whole. There's length, elegance and complexity all delivered with effortless grace. One of the great marriages between producer and site.

For fans of Dönnhoff's Grosses Gewächs or just German wine fanatics, the 2012s are worth picking up in good quantity across the board. They're just that impressive, that clear - each vineyard is delivered with pitch-perfect precision.

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

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits

2012 Dönnhoff Grosses Gewächs

John Gilman: "The 2012 Türmchen Grosses Gewächs should come in around 13.4 percent alcohol, which may be just a touch lower than in 2011, and the new vintage seems likely to give its counterpart from one year ago serious competition for ultimate quality six or seven years down the road. The beautifully complex and classy nose delivers a blend of grapefruit, white grape, wild yeasts, gentle smokiness, a hint of fresh nutmeg and a floral topnote redolent of white lilies. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and shows off excellent mid-palate depth, with great focus, ripe acids and stunning backend energy and grip on the very long and classy finish. This is a beautiful vintage for this fine wine, and at this early stage, it is hard to choose a favorite between the 2011 and the 2012 versions."

John Gilman: "The 2012 Dellchen Grosses Gewächs is a superb wine in the making, jumping from the glass in a youthfully complex mélange of grapefruit, tart orange, wild yeasts, complex slate tones, citrus peel and smoke. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and has laser-like focus, with a rock solid core, ripe acids and a very, very long, primary finish. This superb Grosses Gewächs will need a good six or seven years’ worth of bottle age to really blossom and come into its own, and it should prove to very long-lived."

John Gilman: "I mentioned how impressed I had been last year with the brilliance of the 2011 Hermannshöhle Grosses Gewächs to Herr Dönnhoff, and he suggested it would be fun to taste it again after sampling the 2012 version- which made for a very interesting comparison indeed. I gave a very, very slight nod to the more extroverted 2011, but the 2012 is very, very close in potential. The 2012 Hermannshöhle Grosses Gewächs offers up a young and stunning aromatic blend of tart apple, pink grapefruit, a touch of rosemary, petrol, slate, wild yeasts, smoky overtones and a topnote of orange zest. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and very precise, with a rock solid core, crystalline minerality, brisk acids and stunning length and grip on the snappy finish. A great wine in the making!"