From: Mosel, Germany
Taste & Critical Acclaim: 96 points Wine Advocate
The 2021 Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett shows stunning reduction on the clear, intense and well-concentrated, super precise and also complex nose that reveals discreet herbal aromas. What a beauty! Lush and light on the palate, this is a pristine, textured and incredibly fine Himmelreich with a long, saline and perfectly round finish. This is a beautiful, classic Kabinett that deserves the highest praise. Picked below 80° Oechsle, this 2021 Himmelreich proves that sensory ripeness doesn’t need a refractometer to show complexity and style. 7.5% stated alcohol. Natural cork. Tasted at the domaine in July 2022. (SR) (8/2022)
94 points James Suckling
At once cool and restrained, yet ripe and aromatic. Plenty of yellow apple and mirabelle, but also ripe pear and delicate fresh herb aromas. Super bright and precise, this has a seriously racy personality and tons of extract at the very crisp and focused red apple finish. Drink or hold. (9/2022)
95pts Mosel Fine Wines: "The 2021er Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett is a fruity-styled wine driven on the nose by some refined and even very elegant residual scents from its spontaneous fermentation which gradually give way to stunning elements mixing whipped almond cream, vineyard peach, orange blossom, minty herbs, jasmine, and acacia. The wine shows great presence and intensity on the palate yet remains incredibly light and refined. The finish shows all the minerality and stony side of the wine, and is superbly chiseled and precise. 2029-2046." (06/2022)
Pairing: Kabinett Rieslings like this one pairs well with Asian cuisine, seafood (see the recipe below), dishes with high acidity, and many others. Here’s a list of ideas for each of the categories:
Asian cuisine: Green curry, drunken noodles/pad kee mao, dan dan noodles, pad see ew, Haianese chicken rice, sushi, fried fish, chicken or pork katsu, Bánh cuốn – rolled rice sheets with pork & mushroom, Cá kho tộ – ‘clay pot’ braised catfish, and even Bún bò Huế – spicy beef & pork Huế soup
Seafood: Shrimp tempura, crab, sole, sushi, smoked fish, bass, and fish tacos
High-acid dishes: Sauerkraut (like in Choucroute Garnie or Tertich: or cräwes Potato purée with sauerkraut), sweet and sour chicken, pasta with brown butter, whole lemon, and parmesan, tamarind-glazed black bass with a coconut-herb salad
Other food pairings for Kabinett Riesling include: vegetable sautées with garlic, lighter poultry or pork entrees served as a creamy pasta/fried/baked/roasted, spicy chicken, chicken wings, pork or chicken schnitzel, hot dogs
Spicy Thai Squid With Chiles and Cilantro
By Melissa Clark
Schaefer is without question one of the greatest producers in Germany. This is a benchmark for the Mosel and is coveted not just by collectors, but by other growers. The Schaefer family has been growing grapes in Graach since 1121, and to this day, remain a small family-run operation growing only riesling.
This wine. Terroir: Located in Graach, with a south-to-southwest exposition on Devonian Slate. The vines have great sun exposure all day as well as natural spring that runs through the hillside, guaranteeing good water supply even in warm vintages. The Romans already knew the benefits of Graach’s sites and cultivated vines here. In the Prussian classification of the Mosel vineyards from 1816 to 1832, Graach’s vineyards had the highest ratings.
Vinification: The fermentation takes place with natural yeasts from the vineyard mainly in old 1,000-liter Fuder casks. In the cellar, they try to intervene as little as possible and accompany rather what nature has provided them.
Many thanks to importer, Rare Wine Co. for the linked information about the venerable Willi Schaefer. Check it out here.
Aging: They give the Rieslings the time in the cellar that they need, including a long lees contact and a late bottling to ensure balance in their wines.
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