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J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Auslese Riesling 2010

Riesling from Mosel, Germany
  • WS94
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  • RP93
8% ABV
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8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Excellent structure, ripe aromas and flavors of stone fruits (like peach), a fine minerality, great depth and length. Unique harmony, finesse and expression after aging. Fine, yet racy with elegance and complexity. Beautiful balance between fine minerality, crisp acidity, expressive fruit aromas and flavors.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 94
Wine Spectator
Very creamy, rich and elegant, with luscious peach, apple compote and lemon cake flavors that feature hints of chamomile. Everything is in proportion, with notes of Key lime pie on the ethereal finish. Drink now through 2040.
W&S 94
Wine & Spirits
Hunkered down into itself, this feels compact and firm, the combination of super ripe green fruits dovetailing perfectly with earthy soil notes. A smoky note pervades the wine, complemented by a crisp herbal note that brings freshness to it. It feels like it could last a few decades, slowly giving more with each year.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A Prum 2010 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese A.P. #17 allies ennobled richness of vanilla- and honey-tinged apple and alluring creaminess of texture to juicy vivacity of citrus; low alcohol levity; and transparency to nuances of honeysuckle and heliotrope perfume, crushed stone and brown spices. The palpably high extract here and hint of chewy fruit skin do not detract from an overriding sense of polish and buoyancy. While its at once soothing and stimulating long finish is ravishingly long, it will take time for this Auslese to reveal what is probably an advantage in nascent, nuanced complexity vis-a-vis the corresponding Bernkasteler. Time will as always be on its side, and I would not recommend seriously tucking into bottles of this for at least 12-15 years, with expectations for it to hit age 40 acting youthful. (I did not have opportunity to taste a corresponding auction cuvee, A.P. #27.)
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J.J. Prum

JJ Prum

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JJ Prum, Mosel, Germany
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For centuries the Prüm family has called the village of Wehlen home. The 33.5 acre estate consists of nearly 70% ungrafted vines. Holdings are in the best parts of the top Middle-Mosel sites: Wehlener Sonnenuhr, Zeltinger Sonnenuhr, Graacher Himmelreich, Graacher Domprobst, Bernkasteler Lay, Bernkasteler Badstube, and Bernkasteler Bratenhöfchen. Average annual production is 13,000 cases. The harvest at J.J. Prüm is always extremely late, and the wines are very long-lived.

Home to some of the world’s finest and longest-lived sweet and dry white wines, the Mosel is a region of Germany formerly known as Mosel-Saar-Ruwer—named thusly for the three rivers that flow through its dramatic valleys. Geology, climate and topography are paramount here, and the wines produced communicate a distinct sense of place. In addition to being prized for their heat-retaining properties, slate-based soils lend a stony minerality to the wines, contributing to some of the most recognizable terroir in the world. Cool temperatures necessitate the use of the region’s rivers to reflect heat onto the vineyards, and the best wines are made from sites with south or southwest facing slopes to receive sufficient direct sunlight for ripening. The breathtakingly steep slopes that straddle the river banks cannot be worked by machine, contributing to a high cost of labor (and treacherous working conditions).

Riesling is by far the most important and prestigious grape of the Mosel, grown on approximately 60% of the region’s vineyard land—typically the sites that provide the best combination of sunlight, soil type, and altitude. These wines, dry or sweet, are distinguished by marked acidity, low alcohol, and intense flavors of wet stone, citrus, and stone fruit. With age, a pleasing aroma of petroleum often develops. The lesser plots are mainly planted with lower-maintenance but relatively neutral varieties like Müller-Thurgau and other German crosses, but Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) and Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) can perform quite well here.

Riesling

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A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining easily identifiable typicity. This versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling, and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Riesling is best known in Germany and Alsace, and is also of great importance in Austria. The variety has also been particularly successful in Australia’s Clare and Eden Valleys, New Zealand, Oregon, Washington, cooler regions of California, and the Finger Lakes in New York.

In the Glass

Riesling is low in alcohol, with high acidity, steely minerality, and stone fruit, spice, citrus, and floral notes. At its ripest it leans towards juicy peach and nectarine, and pineapple, while in cooler climes it is more redolent of meyer lemon, lime, and green apple. With age, Riesling can become truly revelatory, developing unique, complex aromatics, often with a hint of gasoline.

Perfect Pairings

Riesling is very versatile, enjoying the company of sweet-fleshed fish like sole, most Asian food, especially Thai and Vietnamese (bottlings with some residual sugar and low alcohol are the perfect companions for dishes with substantial spice), and freshly shucked oysters. Sweeter styles work well with fruit-based desserts.

Sommelier Secret

It can be difficult to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling, and German labeling laws do not make things any easier. Look for the world “trocken” to indicate a dry wine, or “halbtrocken” or “feinherb” for off-dry. Some producers will include a helpful sweetness scale on the back label—happily, a growing trend.

TEWG060610_2010 Item# 116233