Dr. Loosen Beerenauslese Riesling 2006
Beerenauslese ("berry select") is a rich, honeyed dessert wine made from grapes that have been shriveled by botrytis, the "Noble Rot." These extremely concen- trated, moldy grapes are painstakingly separated from the unaffected fruit and vinified to make one of Germany's most prized vinous treasures.
Made from an early picking of botrytized grapes from the Bernkasteler Lay vineyard, this is a sweet, plump wine, filled to the brim with lush tropical fruit flavors. The aromas show remarkably pure pear and pineapple scents, with just a touch of dried apricots but also a sense of slate-driven minerality. With 300 cases imported, it should prove relatively easy to find.Score: 93. —Joe Czerwinski, December 15, 2007.
Gorgeous aromas of apricot, lime zest and freesia introduce this elegant dessert white. With its airy texture and weightlessness, it wears the sweetness and acidity effortlessly, with a very clean finish. Drink now through 2035.Score: 93. —Bruce Sanderson, April 30, 2008.
So bountiful in sugar was this vintage, that not only did Dr. Loosen render Beerenauslese from most of the estate's major vineyards, there is also a highly-affordable generic 2006 Riesling Beerenauslese. This displays a lovely dynamic of lemon and honey, a creamy richness, subtle suggestions of floral and herbal distillate, and the sort of polish, refinement, and well-judged residual sugar one expects from this great estate. If not terribly complex, it will hopefully serve over the coming decade as a window for many wine enthusiasts (especially as diners) to the unique balance and virtues (not least versatility) of nobly sweet Mosel wine. "My grandfather would have said 'Too much Beerenauslese? Impossible!" relates Loosen. "But in fact that's how it was this year." (And hard though this would have been to believe only until recently, one cannot rule out there being another such bumper crop of botrytized, mega-Oechsle Riesling.)Score: 89. —David Schildknecht, October 2008.
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