J.J. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese 2019
The wines of the Wehlener Sonnenuhr possess excellent structure, show beautiful, ripe aromas and flavors (typically stone fruits), a fine minerality, and great depth and length. After having been aged for some years, the harmony, finesse and expression of these wines is unique.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The most beautiful tropical flowers (so much hibiscus!) pour from the glass of this graceful giant. Stunning concentration and also some baby fat, but also a great structure and it needs all of those to age for many decades, as it surely will. Drink or hold.
The 2019 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Auslese is deep and intense on the nicely reductive yet concentrated and spicy-mineral nose that reveals a flinty/crunchy slate aroma with generous but elegant and refined fruit and subtle grapefruit aromas. On the palate, this Auslese displays a fine raisin aroma of perfectly ripe and overripe Riesling grapes, whereas the textured is highly finessed and beautifully balanced. This is impossible to spit, as the crystalline acidity is so delicate and interwoven with the fruit and texture of this persistently salty beauty.
Following the Mosel River as it slithers and weaves dramatically through the Eifel Mountains in Germany’s far west, the Mosel wine region is considered by many as the source of the world’s finest and longest-lived Rieslings.
Mosel’s unique and unsurpassed combination of geography, geology and climate all combine together to make this true. Many of the Mosel’s best vineyard sites are on the steep south or southwest facing slopes, where vines receive up to ten times more sunlight, a very desirable condition in this cold climate region. Given how many twists and turns the Mosel River makes, it is not had to find a vineyard with this exposure. In fact, the Mosel’s breathtakingly steep slopes of rocky, slate-based soils straddle the riverbanks along its entire length. These rocky slate soils, as well as the river, retain and reflect heat back to the vineyards, a phenomenon that aids in the complete ripening of its grapes.
Riesling is by far the most important and prestigious grape of the Mosel, grown on approximately 60% of the region’s vineyard land—typically on the desirable sites that provide the best combination of sunlight, soil type and altitude. The best Mosel Rieslings—dry or sweet—express marked acidity, low alcohol, great purity and intensity with aromas and flavors of wet slate, citrus and stone fruit. With age, the wine’s color will become more golden and pleasing aromas of honey, dried apricot and sometimes petrol develop.
Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining its identity. A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, 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. Somm Secret—Given how difficult it is to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling from the label, here are some clues to find the dry ones. First, look for the world “trocken.” (“Halbtrocken” or “feinherb” mean off-dry.) Also a higher abv usually indicates a drier Riesling.