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2003 Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Berg Kaisersteinfels Riesling Trockenbeerenauslese (half bottle)
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no stars Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - January/February 2005

($376; for 375 ml.) Even though this is still slowly fermenting, it displays refinement and lift alongside the viscosity of texture and honey, caramel and spice character it shares with Leitz's other '03 TBAs. The long, penetrating finish combines juicy fresh fruit and salty mineral layers. This year's entire TBA collection really demands delayed assessment but there can be no doubt that this particular wine is headed for the stars. 2 stars.

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About Germany

German vintners and Germany's wine law have often been their own worst enemies, and consumers understandably bemoan the unintelligibility of the labels as well as the mediocre quality of so many commercial-grade wines. It is a shame if this situation acts as a barrier to appreciating some of the world's most distinctive and versatile wines.
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Riesling

The Riesling grape may scare away some wine novices. In Germany, where the grape reaches its finest expression, labels hew to a rigid, abstruse set of classifications, leaving newcomers with little idea what they may be looking at. Furthermore, many wine drinkers' early experiences with sweet wines from Germany (think Blue Nun), have not been especially rewarding. We say that it's your loss if you continue to fear the...
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