Joh. Jos. Prüm, Graacher Himmelreich Auslese Goldkapsel

Joh. Jos. Prüm, Graacher Himmelreich Auslese Goldkapsel, 2010

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  • icon-grapevariety Grape variety
    Riesling 100%
  • Rating

    RP 91

This classical Graacher Himmelreich Auslese is an excellent example of an elegant Mosel Riesling Auslese. The Goldkapsel version is only produced in extraordinary vintages.

It shows a fascinating interplay between crispy fruit aromas and flavours, an expressive minerality and a fine acidity. This wine has a long ageing potential and will develop even more harmony and finesse in the years to come.

About Joh. Jos. Prüm

Joh. Jos. Prüm is easily one of Germany's most famous wine producers. The estate is based in the village of Wehlen on the banks of the Mosel, and produces top-quality Rieslings that are noted for their balance and longevity. J.J. Prüm's wines are highly collectable, and are consistently included on Wine-Searcher's Most Expensive Wines list.

The Prüm family has been making wine in the Mosel for several hundred years, but Joh. Jos. Prüm was founded properly in 1911, by Johann Josef Prüm. The estate was taken over by his brother Sebastian in 1920, the year that Joh. Jos. Prüm created its first sweet Auslese wine, and from there went on to become one of Germany's most well-known and highly respected wines. It has remained in the family since.

Joh. Jos. Prüm has some 20 hectares (50 acres) of vines spread out over several Erste Lage vineyards. Almost half of these are found in the Wehlener Sonnenuhr vineyard, which makes a range of styles under the Prädikatswein system, including Auslese, Beerenauslese, Eiswein and Trockenbeerenauslese. These are undoubtedly the estate's most prominent wines, although wines made in the Graacher Himmelreich and Bernkasteler Badstube vineyards are also highly sought after.

Grape variety

Riesling is a white grape variety which originated in the Rhine region. Riesling is an aromatic grape variety displaying flowery, almost perfumed, aromas as well as high acidity. It is used to make dry, semi-sweet, sweet, and sparkling white wines. Riesling wines are usually varietally pure and are seldom oaked. As of 2004, Riesling was estimated to be the world's 20th most grown variety at 48,700 hectares (120,000 acres) (with an increasing trend), but in terms of importance for quality wines, it is usually included in the "top three" white wine varieties together with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Riesling is a variety which is highly "terroir-expressive", meaning that the character of Riesling wines is greatly influenced by the wine's place of origin.

In cool climates (such as many German wine regions), Riesling wines tend to exhibit apple and tree fruit notes with noticeable levels of acidity that are sometimes balanced with residual sugar. A late-ripening variety that can develop more citrus and peach notes is grown in warmer climates (such as Alsace and parts of Austria). In Australia, Riesling is often noted for a characteristic lime note that tends to emerge in examples from the Clare Valley and Eden Valley in South Australia. Riesling's naturally high acidity and pronounced fruit flavours give wines made from the grape exceptional aging potential, with well-made examples from favourable vintages often developing smoky, honey notes, and aged German Rieslings, in particular, taking on a "petrol" character.

In wine making, the delicate nature of the Riesling grape requires special handling during harvesting to avoid crushing or bruising the skin. Without this care, the broken skins could leak tannin into the juice, giving a markedly coarse taste and throwing off balance the Riesling's range of flavours and aromas.

A wine that is best at its "freshest" states, the grapes and juice may be chilled often throughout the vinification process. Once, right after picking to preserve the grapes' more delicate flavours. Second, after it has been processed through a bladder press and right before fermentation. During fermentation, the wine is cooled in temperature controlled stainless steel fermentation tanks kept between 10 and 18 °C (50 and 64 °F). This differs from red wines that normally ferment at 24 to 29 °C (75 to 84 °F)

Unlike Chardonnay, most Riesling do not undergo malolactic fermentation. This helps preserve the tart, acidic characteristic of the wine that gives Riesling its "thirst-quenching" quality. (Producers of Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio often avoid malolactic fermentation for the same reason.) Riesling is often put through a process of cold stabilisation, where the wine is stored just above its freezing point. The wine is kept at this temperature until much of the tartaric acid has crystallised and precipitated out of the wine. This helps prevent crystallisation of the acid (often called "wine diamonds") in the bottle. After this, the wine is normally filtered again to remove any remaining yeast or impurities.

In viticulture, the two main components in growing Riesling grapes are to keep it "Long & Low" meaning that the ideal situation for Riesling is a climate that allows for a long, slow ripening and proper pruning to keep the yield low and the flavour concentrated.

Alternative Names: Weisser Riesling, Johannisberg Riesling, Johannisberger, Rhine Riesling, Riesling Renano

About Graach

Graach is a village in Bereich Bernkastel, in the Mosel wine region of Germany. The vineyards in Graach are part of an expansive slate hillside that rises above the right bank of the river from Bernkastel-Kues to Zeltingen. This southwest-facing slope towers over the village and is precariously steep, undulating along the one mile (1.5km) or so of riverbank towards Wehlen.

Graach has a total of 135 hectares (333 acres) of vineyards planted almost entirely to Riesling. Three sites have been classified by the VDP as Grosse Lage – Domprobst, Josephshöfer and Himmelreich. The Graacher Domprobst ("provost") vineyard is named for the dean of the Trier cathedral, who at one time received one-third of the total taxes raised in Graach. This block of 28.5ha (70 acres) faces southwest, giving the vines good exposure to all-day sun, and has blue-grey Devonian clay-slate soil.

The Graacher Josephshöfer is a rare monopole Grosse Lage entirely owned by Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt. It is located next to Domprobst and adjacent to Wehlen's famous Sonnenuhr vineyard, and covers 5ha (12 acres) of steeply sloping hillside. The soil is weathered grey Devonian slate and heavier than that in the surrounding area, with more clay. This site produces rich, spicy wines with an aroma of peach and excellent aging potential.

Graacher Himmelreich ("Kingdom of Heaven") is a large, 87-ha (215-acre) vineyard of steep, weathered clay and blue slate. The latter helps to produce wines that again show great minerality and ability to age. Himmelreich is shaped like a long-handled pan, with a thin section running along the top of the slope above the Domprobst and Josephshöfer vineyards and Graach village, leading to a squarer portion which drops to the river on the upstream side of the village, occupying the entire hillside.

Regular price $1,302.00

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