Mind boggling complexity-to-value ratio on this wine!
Dr. Ulrich Stein is more than a winemaker — he is a passionate advocate for the traditional, steep, slate vineyards of the Mosel. Back in 2010, the man widely known as “Ulli” wrote a call to arms against the modern threats to the 2,000-year tradition of German viticulture. Ulli has made it his mission to preserve that tradition, devoting decades to producing Riesling from steep, vertigo-inducing vineyard sites teeming with Blauschiefer soils also known as Blue Slate. He has fought the German government on numerous occasions in order to reclaim these sites for cultivation — and he has beat them every time.
The Rieslings of the Mosel Valley are arguably the finest in Germany and perhaps in the entire world. First planted by the Romans, the region’s famously steep slopes overlook the Mosel, Saar, and Ruwer rivers. The world’s steepest vineyard can be found there, at a mind-boggling incline of 65 degrees. These vineyards on slate soils are perfect for cultivating Riesling, since the steep slopes in the Mosel’s cool climate optimize the exposure to the sun, facilitating proper ripeness.
But just because the forbidding slopes are perfect for the grapes doesn’t make them perfect for the humans charged with cultivating them. There’s no way to get plows and tractors to work them so the tending has to be done by hand. Ulli’s vineyards demand seven times the manual labor that a vineyard on the valley floor would require, significantly adding to his costs. That makes today’s offer all the more significant.
At $17.99, it makes us wonder how Ulli Stein is making any money off of his 2015 Blue Slate Dry Riesling. But Ulli’s passion, his mission is not the bottom line — it’s to continue the 2,000-year-old tradition of Mosel steep-slope viticulture, producing stony, elegant wines made in the organic method with nothing added. It appears Ulli is willing to take a financial hit to preserve this tradition and get these real, bone-dry wines into the hands of wine lovers across the globe.
Clear straw-yellow color with aromas of lime rind, fresh apple, white peach, and sea air. On the palate, the aromas take on a juicy, crunchy freshness on a fleshy yet bone-dry mid-palate. The Riesling ends on a peachy, salty, and lime-zested finish. The mind boggles at the complexity-to-value ratio on this wine. Drink now to 2022.
Ulli Stein wants the world to taste what real, dry, traditional Mosel Riesling tastes like. The finest restaurants in the world — like Noma, Eleven Madison Park, and Daniel — have poured Stein’s Riesling by the glass; now it’s our turn. Finally, after years of phone calls and emails, we landed 50 cases. At $17.99/bottle, we know they won’t last long. Shipping included on 6. Case-buy highly recommended.
I'm certainly not a Riesling expert, but this is nice and crisp with good minerality. I like it!
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