Hermann J. Wiemer HJW Vineyard Riesling 2016
#2 wine in VinePair's Top 50 of 2018
Planted in 1976, our HJW Vineyard features Hermann’s original plantings on Seneca Lake. Mature vines, combined with the site’s shallow topsoil and shale bedrock, produce lower yields, resulting in expressively vibrant flavors. Higher elevation and a greater distance from Seneca Lake contribute to a cooler growing season, resulting in a leaner, more austere wine with intense flavor and an excellent aging potential. These core characteristics of the HJW vineyard are expressed in this exclusive vineyard-specific wine. Invigorating crispness and an appealing balance of flavors combine with an unprecedented minerality, which carries into an impressive and enduring finish.
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Hermann Wiemer was born in Bernkastel, Germany into a family with 300 years experience in making the distinguished vinifera wines of the Mosel Valley. He arrived in the United States in 1968 already well versed in the European tradition of fine winemaking. To this heritage he added the skill of grafting fragile vinifera vines onto sturdy American rootstock.
In 1973 he bought 140 acres on the west side of Seneca Lake, which he planted with a variety of European vinifera grapevines. Visitors who wish to see these vines, along with ponds and the six acre nursery, can take the popular Vineyard Walk through the property.
The Winery, which produces 12,000 cases each year, was designed in 1982 by an award winning team of Cornell architects. Enclosed within the shell of a seventy-year-old scissor-trussed barn, it accommodates a laboratory, tasting and retail sales, a wine production area and a private tasting room. Its unique white cathedral-like interior counterpoints the bare wooden walls and sleek Italian stainless steel tanks.