Over Two Decades and Still Young: 1990 Karthäuserhof

Posted by Joe Salamone

The Ruwer Speaks
1990 Karthäuserhof Auslese
Over Two Decades of Development -
Close to Current-Release Pricing

Up in the foresty, dew-covered Ruwer Valley, Karthäuserhof has been producing some of the most glowingly austere, mineral-drenched Rieslings since 1335.

This is one of the grandest estates in the Mosel, complete with a once-moated castle from the 12th century and one of the most distinctive terroirs in all of Germany.

This is also the Ruwer, the overlooked little brother of the Saar and one of the most fascinating German winegrowing regions. This area is essentially defined by the two great monopoles: Von Schubert's Abts/Bruder/Herrenberg trio and Karthäuserhof's eponymous Karthäuserhofberg.

Both estates have the well-earned reputation for aging themselves into greatness. With a decade (or many more) in the cellar, Karthäuserhof's buoyant citrus widens to introduce exotic spices, herbs and wax notes; the minerality becomes much more detailed and textured, a kaleidoscopic presentation of stone, flowers and forest-floor notes that provide a bewildering sensory experience.

This is a very limited parcel. Please give us your maximum order and we'll do our best!

Karthäuserhof has a track record of excellence that goes back a few hundred years, though by the late 19th century the wines were winning awards in various European wine competitions.

We have had personal experience with the wines going back to the 1960s - even the "off-vintage" 1963 proved startlingly fresh and wispy, gossamer and balanced. Even next to a rather famous 1966 Karthäuserhof it held its own.

Winemaker Ludwig Breiling took over the cellar beginning with the 1986 vintage and his era at Karthäuserhof was strong (he has only recently retired). As so many wine writers have pointed out, the warmer vintages tend to be very strong in both the Saar and the Ruwer. Both valleys are much wider and open than the Mosel, they tend to have cooler temperatures and they need more time to ripen.

So it is that the 1990 Karthäuserhofs are excellent - superbly balanced with great concentration and that singular, persistent yet wispy vein of acidity/minerality that keeps them bright and energetic. These 1990 Karthäuserhofs are refreshing, perfect for solo meditation but equally adept at a table with food.

Profoundly versatile, incredibly priced and still with a good decade or more ahead. There's likely little more to be said, aside from this: Don't miss!

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

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits