2009 Willi Schaefer Graacher Domprobst Riesling Kabinett

Year: 2009
Appellation: Mosel-Saar-Ruwer
Country: Germany
Wine Spectator: 90
Wine Advocate: 90
Vinous Media: 92
White Wine
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"This is succulent and underscored by a mineral streak, which lends support for its peach, apple and lime zest flavors. Harmonious and tangy, offering a lingering slate aftertaste. Drink now through 2024. 150 cases imported." (WS)

"The Schaefers’ sole 2009 Graacher Domprobst Riesling Kabinett marks a striking contrast with its Himmelreich counterpart, and one the Schaefers say perfectly illustrates the effect of there being water-retentive fine particulate matter often even 60 meters down in Himmelreich, whereas one hits hard mother rock far sooner in Domprobst. A watercolor-like sense of flavor elements bleeding into one another yet permitting a fine sense of mineral detail to emerge; a less emphatic or bright impression; yet lovely complexity and lingering caress of northerly orchard and citrus fruits tinged with nut oils, green tea, salt and stone, render this Domprobst Kabinett memorable. And it’s not as though it is either analytically deficient in acidity or lacking in energetic springs to propel its finish and keep the results refreshing. Those results should remain that way for at least 15 years.

Most of the harvest of 2009 here was accomplished during the second half of October. "We'd actually reckoned with an earlier start," remarks Christophe Schaefer, "but although the grapes looked beautiful, when we tasted them we thought, 'no we really need to – and we can – wait.'" "The grapes were very stable," adds Willi Schaefer, "and when we did get botrytis – encouraged by a bit of October rain – it dried up nicely. And when you get this sort of late botrytis, it can really concentrate already high acids." Furthermore, parcels in Graach had retained their foliage after the one-night cold snap in early October. All of this year's wines remained on their fine lees at least through March, and the Schaefers pointed out that choices about which to bottle at what Pradikat level were usually made only from cask as the wines evolved, since with the exception of late pickings notably influenced by botrytis, the character of fruit was remarkably uniform. Another feature of 2009 that the Schaefers emphasized was high skin-to-juice ratios, something I certainly thought discernable even before they mentioned this. As a result their yields ended up being even lower than they had been anticipated on the basis of eyeballing and measuring the incoming volume of grapes." (WA)

"($26) Peach pit, cherry blossom and quince jelly dominate the bouquet. Almost creamy in texture yet delicate in weight, the smoky, wet stone minerality providing elegant counterpoint to the wine's ripe apricot fruit. Slatey and long on the aftertaste. Along with the Herrenberg Riesling Kabinett #12 of von Schubert, this is the kabinett of the vintage." (IWC)