Weiser-Kunstler, Riesling Ellergrub GE, 2018

$66.99
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Ellergrube is a striking steep terraced site of pure blue slate. The ungrafted vines here are 90-100-plus years old and their little berries are concentrated with minerality and intensity.  The juice undergoes a 24-hour maceration before going into old tonneau to encourage a little active air exchange. This wine is made to mature, and will be stunning for years to come.

Weiser-Kunstler is a young Mosel estate farming ancient sites. Late-19th century maps of the most prestigious vineyards classify Weiser-Kunstler’s top sites – Steffensberg, Gaispfad and Ellergrub – all “Grand Cru.” And while this blossoming estate cannot claim Grosses Gewaches on the technicality of not being a member of the VDP group, they produce some of the Mosel's very finest dry, grand cru wines.

This rare stretch of terroir is unlike any other in the Mosel. The very old, traditional terraces are intact; the vines are 80-100 year-old ungrafted Riesling, densely planted on very craggy, steep slate slopes. And so the character of the wines is unlike any other. They do not boast the tropics of the Piesporter amphitheater or the abundant flora of the grand Braunberger hills. Instead the quieter, cooler tones of these sites emphasize pure minerality, salinity and sheer chalkiness. I can think of no other wines that so deftly balance delicacy, ferocity and pure minerality.

Konstantin Weiser and Alexandra Kunstler meticulously farm their 3 hectares (think the size of Willi Schaefer) and these stunning dry wines are the prime selections of wine from the best grapes. As you can imagine, quantity is extremely limited for all these bottlings.

Konstantin Weiser and Alexandra Künstler are two immensely passionate people farming a tiny, but fantastic, plot of vines. These are micro-estates with only around 4 hectares total. Everything is done by hand and they farm everything biodynamically. The Rieslings they make vibrate with cords of tense minerality and acidity stretched across an incredibly pure and crystalline palate filled with salt-tinged floral and citrus fruit notes.

As soulful and authentic as their Rieslings are, Weiser-Künstler is a relative newcomer releasing their first wine in 2005. Their holdings are in Traben-Trarbach, just downstream from the more famous section of the Middle Mosel. This charming town was the heart of the Mosel wine scene at the turn of the 20th century with Art Nouveau architecture that proudly harkens back to that prosperous time. Weiser-Künstler is largely inspired by that era and, in fact, designed their owl-adorned label in that style. The owl represents wisdom, which is a reference to the literal meaning of Konstantin’s last name, Weiser.

Details

  • Country

    Germany

  • Region

    Mosel

  • Grape Variety

    Riesling

  • Vintage

    2018

  • Size

    750ml

  • Farming Practice

    Natural

  • Sweetness

    Dry

  • Body

    Light Bodied