Kreydenweiss admitted that the '99 vintage featured sizable yields, but noted that the wines are high in dry extract. And yields are moderate here under any circumstances, thanks to short pruning and bourgeonnage in early July. The 2000 harvest was much harder to work than the previous year, as rot at the beginning required a lot of selection. Kreydenweiss ultimately took six weeks to pick, making this his longest harvest yet. He continues to encourage his wines to go through their malolactic fermentation, as he believes lactic acidity is much more conducive to digestion than malic. Besides, he adds, even if there's relatively little malic acid to begin with, the difference in texture and complexity between the pre- and post-malolactic wine is like night and day. (Wilson-Daniels, St. Helena, CA)
Nuts, butter and a whiff of peach blossom on the rather closed nose. Juicy and fairly dense, with ripe acidity and moderate nuance. Solidly dry pinot blanc, with less than two grams per liter residual sugar.
Bright, slightly honeyed aromas of flowers, spices and mint; suggests some botrytis character. Spicy and high-toned; less dense than the 2000 but more honeyed and equally lively.
Flowers and lime skin on the nose. Leanish, bright and spicy, with firm acids contributing to the impression of dryness and grip. Flavors of lime and almond.
Intriguing aromas of pineapple, white flowers, minerals and vanilla. Dense and supple, with nicely integrated, ripe acidity. In a gentle style, but nicely dry (under 2 g/l r.s) and persistent.
Musky, aromatically expressive nose dominated by grapefruit and licorice. Pure and pungent in the mouth, but also rather silky and rich, with complex flavors of orange blossom, honey, flowers and minerals. Nicely dense and dry; rather Mosel-like riesling.
Deeply pitched aromas of hazelnut and smoke. Then juicy and leanish; more classically dry than the 2000 but also less aromatic in the mouth. Notes of citrus skin and minerals.
Musky, nuanced, ripe aromas of peach, nuts and butter. Intensely flavored and bright, with lime, peach and mineral notes, and juicy acidity contributing to the impression of cut. Solidly structured wine, but still rather closed. Finishes with noteworthy persistence.
Nose dominated by the wine pinot gris component (peach, orange blossom, butter), but also shows strong soil tones. Dense, rich and smooth, with lively acidity and very good length. Quite perfumed in the mouth, and nicely balanced. Satisfying, fresh and ripe. This wine seems to have reached a new quality level in '99 and '00.
Ripe but cool aromas of grapefruit, peach, lime, lemon ice and mint. Rich, dense and supple, with mouthfilling, chewy texture and excellent length. Despite its strong mineral underpinning, it not at all hard or austere. Kreydenweiss always picks his grand cru rieslings at VT ripeness of 13+% potential alcohol, "like an Austrian smaragd, in order to showcase the grand cru." The foregoing wines, he told me, are typically in the 12% to 12.5% range, and thus are "still delicate." Long and clinging on the back end.
Reticent but very ripe aromas of honeysuckle, nuts, peach and candied yellow plum; distinct suggestions of noble rot. Fat, dense, very ripe and easygoing; nicely balanced but conveys a distinctly sweeter impression than the 2000. Lovely peachy fruit offers a bit less verve than the '00.
Musky, pure aromas of grapefruit, pineapple and liquid stone. Bright, chewy and firm; lime and mineral flavors are bracing but not hard. Lively acids nicely buffer the wine 14 grams per liter residual sugar. Very young, densely packed riesling with the structure to reward aging. These vines were harvested in November.
Explosive, slightly exotic aromas of honey, peach, nuts and spices. Ripe, large-scaled and deeply pitched; less exotic in the mouth than it appears on the nose. Solidly structured riesling, with firm acidity and very good grip. Carrying a bit less residual sugar than the 2000. "This wine was totally shut down a year ago," noted Kreydenweiss.
Rich aromas of honey and butter. Plump and sweet in the middle, but finishes fairly dry and delicate. Not as complex or persistent as Kreydenweiss top rieslings, but fat and satisfying. The impression of sweetness is from ripe fruit, not residual sugar, which is just 3 grams per liter, according to Kreydenweiss. (This wine was not made in 2000 due to hail in May.)
Very complex aromas of ripe apricot, minerals, bitter almond, mint and chlorophyll. Densely packed and solidly structured; chewy, complex and young. Excellent acidity contributes intensity and brightness. This will make a terrific and stylish food wine. Still absorbing its four or five grams of residual sugar.
Full copper-straw color. Exotic aromas of dried fruits, yellow plum, honey, licorice, spices and nuts. Large-scaled, sturdy and sweet, but firm, ripe acidity keeps it from cloying. Musky, intense dried fruit flavors linger long on the aftertaste. A rather Germanic style of tokay, and only slightly sweet on the back end. Kreydenweiss noted that this wine, which carries a moderate 15 grams/liter of residual sugar, was partly meant to show that he can play the same game as Zind-Humbrecht.
Musky, rather subtle aromas of honeysuckle, tangerine and herbs. Bright, moderately sweet and intensely flavored; fresh, stylish and very easy to drink. Finishes dryer than its 20 grams/liter residual sugar would suggest. From a trie in early October. Kreydenweiss recommends using this as an aperitif. He added that he didn't have good botrytis in these vines in 2000.
Rose petal and cinnamon on the nose. Intensely flavored and moderately sweet, but lifted nicely by ripe acids and a floral component. Finishes firm, long and not at all hot. I like the balance here.
Aromas of dried pit fruits and grapefruit; less floral and more spicy than the '00, which is purer on the nose. Nicely concentrated and dense, but could use a bit more vibrancy and nuance. Comes across as dryer than the '00, and less persistent.
Subdued aromas of smoke, nuts and peaches. Juicy and precise in the mouth, with bright acids and a floral quality giving the flavors a pleasingly cool quality and very good cut. A bit less complex in the mouth than on the nose, but this is still rather closed and youthfully unevolved. But will ultimately be a rather easygoing tokay grand cru.
Complex nose melds dried fruits, nuts, spices, honey and butter. Supersweet, honeyed and concentrated; moderately unctuous in texture but the nicely concentrated acids make this taste less sweet than its 60 g/l r.s. Really lovely balance; dense, spicy and very rich. Finishes with lovely lift. Kreydenweiss described this as his only truly sweet wine in '99, from fruit harvested at SGN ripeness.
Superripe aromas of honey, licorice, peach, apricot and orange peel. Chewy and moderately thick, with a flavor of licorice, but kept fresh by racy acidity. Again, I never would have guessed this was carrying 100 grams per liter of residual sugar. Offers plenty of finesse for riesling SGN, though my enthusiasm was slightly tempered by a faint dry edge on the finish.
Musky, gamey, high-toned aromas of truffle and spices. Penetrating, superconcentrated and spicy, with superb acidity (9 g/l) buffering the wine 60 g/l r.s. This has really lovely fruit. Clean, precise and very fresh, and not at all hugely sweet. A wonderful thing to do with the verjus, which somehow managed to ripen in the late fall of 2000.
Pale copper-gold color. Exotic, rot-ennobled aromas of dried fruits, orange marmalade, honey and spices. Superb concentration and cut, with strong acidity leavening the wine great sweetness (150 or 160 g/l, according to Kreydenweiss). Lively flavors of licorice, honey and spices. An SGN that manages to maintain finesse and varietal character despite the extreme level of ripeness. Finishes firm, pure and very long.