Practically defines Riesling transparency - On the Edge of the Saar

Posted by Joe Salamone

On the Very Edge of the Saar
2008 Dr. Siemens
Herrenberg Spätlese Trocken
"...fascinatingly dynamic, spine-tingling in its invigoration, and saliva-inducing..."
-David Schildknecht, Wine Advocate

Standing in the Herrenberg is standing on the frontier.

Just beyond the vineyard, viticulture ends and the forest begins. In fact, in the photo below (taken from the Herrenberg), you can see the wild growth of the forest as the Saar River swings to the right. You can even see the remains of a vineyard site, down close to the river, slowly being reclaimed by the forest.

So what does this mean? What can one achieve at the very border of wine growing? Very exciting things. The Saar, already famous for the tension its wines can show, for the clarity and minerality of its wines, is ratcheted up a notch or two in the "Grand Cru" border zone that is the Herrenberg.

We fell in love with this wine the minute we tasted it at the estate. Schildknecht mirrors our excitement. The complete review, below, is worth reading as he drops superlatives all over this wine:

"...practically defines Riesling transparency... ...fascinatingly dynamic, spine-tingling in its invigoration, and saliva-inducing in its savor. I would not be surprised to witness it still working its magic a decade or more from now..."

Today we present this Saar Trocken from one of our favorite vintages of the past decade at a price that is, to be blunt, simply ludicrous.

The last few years have been very kind to the 2008 Germans - at the recent Rieslingfeier celebration in NYC, some of the top wines (from Keller, Adam, Lauer, and Schäfer-Fröhlich) turned out to be their 2008s. This is a vintage to be reckoned with.

The Herrenberg, and its neighboring vineyard the Würzberg, are among the greatest sites in the Saar. Those of you who have been buying German wines may be familiar with the wines of Bert Simon - Dr. Jochem Siemens bought the estate from Simon after he retired in 2005.

The 2008 is only Dr. Siemens third vintage but very quickly he has found his footing - this wine has such a defined, cut mid-palate awash with great herbal nuance, all the Saar detail and complexity that makes Saar rock stars like Egon Müller, Zilliken and Lauer so famous.

For the moment (and only time will tell how long this moment will last), the wines remain wildly underpriced. This is a chiseled dry Riesling that will cellar for a decade or longer. It flaunts the breed of this special vineyard, yet it's priced like a pool-side summer sipper. (And despite the rather brutal return of winter today in NYC, summer IS around the corner.)

Highly recommended - highly limited. Give us your maximum order and we'll do our best. You may not hear back from us until Monday depending on how busy the store is.

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

Have a great weekend!

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits

2008 Dr. Siemens Herrenberg Spätlese Trocken

David Schildknecht for the Wine Advocate: "Yellow plum, green tea, roux- or wild carrot-like herbal pungency, lemon, and grapefruit scent the 2008 Serriger Herrenberg Riesling Spatlese trocken and follow onto a palate that practically defines Riesling transparency in its glacier water-like freshness and its openness to saline, stony, crystalline mineral as well as herbal, nut oil, and floral nuances. This is fascinatingly dynamic, spine-tinkling in its invigoration, and saliva-inducing in its savor. I would not be surprised to witness it still working its magic a decade or more from now, though there is no track record to go by. Incidentally, this beauty – conveniently for the domestic market – finished fermenting at the precise upper limit of residual sugar for trocken; benefited from extended pre-fermentative maceration, and was vinified in a mixture of cask and tank."

2008 Dr. Siemens is in stock
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