German Wines to Welcome in 2015

Rieslings and pinot noirs provide fresh beginning to a New Year
German Wines to Welcome in 2015

German rieslings and pinot noir ring in 2015.

German wines, even the red spätburgunders (pinot noirs), provide a freshness and liveliness that is perfect for ushering in the new year.

One reliable producer and importer whose products are widely available is P.J. Valckenberg, which selects a varied portfolio to sell in the United States, many at entry-level prices. In addition to rieslings and pinot noirs, there are also a pinot blanc, a gewürztraminer and a lemberger.

So here we go with the first of our 2015 wine reviews:

P. J. Valckenberg Rheinhessen pinot blanc 2013 ($13)

Very nice green fruit, mainly juicy gooseberries, a little soft in the middle but with a crisp finish.

P. J. Valckenberg Pfalz gewürztraimer 2013 ($14)

Good, spicy aromas and flavors of peach and tangerine, pleasantly plump and a tad sweet — a natural with mildly spicy Asian foods.

P. J. Valckenberg “Undone” Rheinhessen dry riesling 2013 ($11)

The tart, crisp side of riesling, with a tin-can minerality in the finish. Not complex, but pleasant everyday drinking.

Prinz zu Salm “Two Princes” Rheinhessen riesling 2013 ($17)

A seductive entry-level wine with lightly sweet, floral flavors upfront and a citrusy finish.

Liebfrauenstift Rheinhessen riesling 2013 ($17)

Another take on the sweet-citrusy profile, with notes of peach, orange, and grapefruit — sweet up front, citrusy in the finish. Enjoyable.

Baron Knyphausen Kiedricher Sandgrub riesling spätlese 2013 ($39)

Quite nice — big and rich, yet well-structured with long flavors of peaches and oranges and even a touch of tannins. Like many spätlese wines, it’s low in alcohol — only 8 percent — so you can drink more of it.

Schloss Saarstein Serriger Schloss Saarsteiner riesling spätlese 2013 ($42)

Juicy and rich with pear/woody notes, flavors of stone fruits and citrus and savory touches. Lively and fresh — almost spritzy — yet full-bodied. Alcohol — 8.5 percent.

Karl Schaefer Wachenstein “Sonnentröpfchen” medium dry riesling 2013 ($29)

Its tart peach intensity more than balances its sweetness. Lots of tin-can minerality. Very nice wine from the Nahe.

Pflüger Dürkheimer spätburgunder trocken 2012 ($27)

Lovely spicy-berry nose with dark cherry flavors with spicy, savory undertones. More of a food-pairing pinot than a sipping one.

Castell Casteller Reitsteig spätburgunder 2012 ($54)

Lovely, light pinot from Franken region with floral cherry flavors but savory bitters in the end.

Grafen Neipperg Württemberg lemberger trocken 2012 ($25)

A grape and wine seldom seem outside of Germany, this lemberger has neutral red fruit with lots of savory bitters around the edges. Think carafe wine.

Related Links
12 German Wines You Must TryGerman Wine RegionsSommelier Certification: The Not Always Sweet Story Of German WinesGerman Wines in Canada

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