Though I think this may become a bloodbath, I wanted to give everyone the opportunity fair and square to seize on the last few cases of my best 2016’s German values: Lauer’s Senior and Keller’s Von der fels. These are absolutely insane values from a glorious vintage.
Florian Lauer’s 2016 Senior is DECLASSIFIED GRAND CRU from un-grafted old vines, from one of Germany’s most talented growers. Keller, without a doubt, Germany’s most prestigious grower of his generation, also declassifies young vine juice from his GRAND CRU vineyards to make his sublime 2016 Von der fels. Both are refreshing and dry.
Both are absolutely, downright terrific “baby Grand Crus” and utterly superb values.
German 2016’s are all about finesse and elegance. Even in their infancy, the Rieslings show tremendous poise and class. This isn’t purely a vintage of the sun (like 2015), but it isn’t a vintage of the earth either (like 2013). 2016 meets somewhere between, there is both fruit and earth; the acidity is touch rounder and creamier … it is an expression that is extremely easy to love.
Mosel Wine, a major publication for German wine, agrees:
“At the top, 2016 is one of the most exciting and elegantly balanced vintage since the 1990s and well-worth stocking up for cellaring! In particular, we urge our readers to literally plunge onto the finest Kabinett and Spätlese: These are some of the most exciting and classic we have ever tasted …”
LIMITED: 2016 Lauer Senior (dry)
Sourced from un-grafted vines 70+ years of age from Lauer’s top Grand Cru (Kupp).
LIMITED: 2016 Keller Von der fels (dry)
25-year-old vines in Grand Cru’s of Kirchspiel, Hubacker and Abtserde. Its bouquet is clear, super ripe and fresh as well as intense and calcareous. On the plate this is a pure and fresh old-school Riesling with a lot of grip and tension.
More About the Wine
Keller and Lauer are two of the key pillars for the German program here.
Keller, often described as “German Montrachet,” is one of the top white wine producers in the world. He owns 18 hectares in the Rheinhessen, 15 of which are ‘Grand Cru’. The wines are a showcase of elaborate details presented with a triumphant harmony. Year in and year out they are tremendous wines. More, his prices at the moment are ridiculously still attainable … for now.
Lauer wines distinguish themselves by the supreme quality of their acidity and beguiling purity of slate and fruit. You have the fineness of the Saar, the ethereal feather light texture that can come only from the coldest spot in Germany. They are confident, precise wines, cerebral certainly, a mesmerizing magnetic pull of peaches, slate, summer herbs, lemon, salt, and white flowers. “Senior” is the flagship of Lauer. A dry, intoxicatingly bright, colorful Riesling from 70 year old ungrafted vines from Ayler Kupp, at $24 per bottle, every square inch of the 2016 “Senior” is untouchable for the price.