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Brothers Andreas and Bernd Spreitzer
Textbook Rheingau wines, deep, and layered but also joyful and delicious.
- Relatively cold winters, hot, medium length, fairly rainy summers, with long, cool, dry autumns.
- This is a special climate for wine in Germany because of four main factors: Aspect, Elevation, and exposure and the River.
- Historically this was the greatest region for white wine in the world. It is warmer than the Mosel, so vintages were more consistent but Its northerly latitude still put it in the cool continental climate zone. This meant perfectly balanced wines with high acid, but ripe intense fruit concentration and the ability to age for… well…ever.
- A bend in the Rhein river means almost the entire Rheingau hillside faces due south, picking up the maximum amount of sunlight and heat available.
- Its moderate to steep slope also helped push ripeness higher, and being along a very wide river, meant reflection of the sun onto the vines for a boost from below.
- Today, what was once a boon, has helped in its waning reputation. Many winemakers continued to push for ripeness in the warming age of climate change, meaning that wines were over ripe, high in alcohol, with low acidities, were generally unbalanced, and not as ageworthy.
- Top producers, like Georg Breuer, have always sought balance above all else, and are one of a handful of estates making brisk, intense wines, which reflect place, but are not over-wrought or flabby.
- White grapes are the majority but there are some great light reds, like Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier that can also ripen well.
- Warmer vintages: 2020, 2019, 2018, 2015 produce wines with lower acidity, higher alcohols, and richer fruit flavors.
- Cooler vintages: 2021, 2013, 2010, 2008 produce what are now considered “classic” cool-climate wines
- 2022 is an enigma. It was hot and very dry for most of the growing season, but rain and long cold fall ended up giving us wines that taste more like “classic” cool-climate wines than rich, ripe wines.
30 ha in the heart of the Rheingau
- Oestricher Lenchen: Grand Cru, deep löss, veins of sand and marl
- Winkeler Jesuitengarten: Grand Cru, calcerous löss, loam, clay, sand, gravel
- Oestrich Rosengarten: Grand Cru, calcerous loam and shell limestone
- Hallgartener Hendelberg: 1er Cru, multi-colored slate and quartzite
- The King of White Grapes.
- High acid, semi aromatic
- A huge variation in style potential from very light and dry, sparkling to the most unctuously sweet wines on the planet.
- Divisive for its high acidity and sugar retaining capabilities
- Perfect in its dynamic nature, ability to transmit the slightest nuance of terroir and being capable of aging for hundreds of years.
Pinot Noir / Spätburgunder
- German Pinot Noir wines are vinified as dry red wines with complex cherry aroma with subtle hints of smoke and almond, slight tannins, and high acidity, with a long finish.
- Had a poor reputation thanks to high yielding, work-horse, clonal material.
- Now Burgundy clones dominate vineyards for the best producers showcasing this incredible variety's true potential.
- Alternate cover crops of herbs, greens, and lentils in the summer with grains in the winter
- Whole cluster, gentle pressing
- Overnight sedimentation
- Long fermenations in temperature controlled stainless steel and old 1,200 L Stück
- Rests on gross lees
- Only filtered once before bottling
Brothers Andreas and Bernd Spreitzer have embraced their wealth of resources to produce Rheingau Rieslings of incredible balance, a feat they liken to walking a tightrope.
With a generational total of 379 years making wine, the Spreitzers have had plenty of practice. Even with all that experience, great balance requires great vineyards. The Spreitzers own prime real estate throughout their sub-region of Oestrich, including the Lenchen vineyard and its most famous parcel, Eisenberg. The secret weapon of Lenchen is its series of underground streams, guaranteeing balance even in the hottest years, an asset in this age of climate change.
With these great terroirs and that generations-long attention to balance, the Spritezer’s achieve some of the most delectable wines in the entire Rheingau, at once beautifully delicate and opulently concentrated.
Fruity and rich, with a playful, unpolished feel, yet clean and sound. These are wines you want to drink, not fuss over. Excellent with food and capable of long aging in the cellar.
Spreitzer, Riesling 101, 2021 $20.99 $18.47
Sweetie, sweetie, sweetie purple fruit, orange texture, less acid, like a candy-wine, uncomplicated a perfect primer on Rheingau.
Spreitzer, Riesling Estate Trocken, 2021 $20.99 $18.47
New clones from Geisenheim with looser berries and clusters, mean less disease pressure, sometimes longer hang time. Peach, earth, yellow stone fruit, apple. Almost a Domprost flavor, with a Rheingau structure. Hand-picked, 5 to 6 g of RS.
Spreitzer, Riesling Geisenheimer Schlossgarten Clos Alte Reben Trocken, 2021 $35.99 $31.67
Spreitzer, Riesling Hallgartener Hendelberg Alte Reben Erste Lagen Trocken, 2022 $35.99 $31.67
Floral, white peach, lighter, less concentration but easy drinking. Highest altitude vineyard, Phyllite soils, longer hang time, and a cooler feel, 10% are from younger vines.
Spreitzer, Riesling Oestrich Alte Reben Trocken, 2022 $25.99 $22.87
★ Muschelkalk, limestone, near the river which equals loam, loess, clay. limestone = Zippy clean, clear brighter, same fruit but sharper structure. Good value, 5 to 6 g/l residual sugar.
Spreitzer, Riesling Oestricher Klosterberg Alte Reben Erste Lagen Trocken, 2022 $35.99 $31.67
50 year old vines on terraces with a southwest exposure at 250 to 210 m elevation. Pretty and elegant structure with a whiff of a spicy, exotic finish. Cohesive, well knit, creamy but not overly ripe, salty, orange sunshine.
Spreitzer, Riesling Oestricher Lenchen Kabinett, 2022 $25.99 $22.87
Oh Yum, lemon, yellow peach, fresh and delicious, great Kabinett, lighter than most, elegant, with less RS than I remember. 8.2 total acidity (that's high) 45 g/l residual sugar.
Spreitzer, Riesling Oestricher Lenchen Spätlese 303, 2022 $54.99 $48.39
★★ So Rheingau = silky roasted peaches. Eisenberg was allotted its name two years ago after the consolidation of 1972. In 1920 their grandfather picked a TBA with sugar concentration at 303 Oschel = 600 g/l of sugar (150 is required for TBA) and it was the record holder until 2003. They honor him with this wine. Only 3 vineyards in Rheingau have red slate and this is one of them. Harvested in October. Spicy, sanguine, meaty, elegant, decadent, please give me some spicy food to eat with this!
Spreitzer, Riesling Rosengarten Grosses Gewächs, 2021 $59.99 $52.79
Scotch-like, oak, dense, yellow, tropical flowers, very rich, spicy, peppery, nutty, with less acid and more typical for Rheingau. Was a monopole labeled Rosengarten until 1971 but then the law changed and it was too small, just over 1 ha, to get a single vineyard name. Everything under 5 ha was consolidated then in 2013 they were granted the right to label with Rosengarten again.
Spreitzer, Riesling Winkeler Jesuitengarten Alte Reben Feinherb, 2022 $35.99 $31.67
Favorite vineyard of the Jesuits right by the Rhein river. I’m calling it the Brücke of Rheingau. Much darker than the Lenchen, spicy, exotic, nutty, tropical, oxidized, finishes dry, syrupy, complex.
Spreitzer, Riesling Wisselbrunnen Grosses Gewächs, 2021 $64.99 $57.19
★ Even though this is 2021 it feels so dense and Rheingau, but a cooler, lime skin white fruit than the overripe peach. Silkier, herbal, more acid. Quartz veins, loam, loess, and clay soils.