Some of the best Riesling in the world come from the Mosel, where Riesling has been grown since the 1400’s. For those in the know, know that Nik Weis is producing some fantastic Rieslings from this historic region.
Nik Weis is a big personality and is enthusiastic and dedicated to winemaking. His family has been making wine in Mosel for over 200 years. St.Urbans-Hofs was founded by Weis’s Grandfather in 1949 and today is the second largest family owned and family run winery in the Mosel. The vines on average are 50 years old. These old vines root deep into the soil, reaching the bedrock of slate which contain the minerality that gives his Rieslings great structure and minerality.
In 1997 Nik took over the winery at the very young age of 26. Having grown up in the vineyards, Nik Weis was hesitant at first to make a dry “Troken Riesling”, it was only a bit later with a combination of global warming and old vines, that he started to make a high quality dry Mosel wines.
In the Mosel, Rieslings are made on slate soils, they are low in alcohol and have less natural sugar. The wines have high acidity, minerality and distinct salinity. The Rieslings are smoky, earthy, and savory.
Nik is famous for making many small batches of Rieslings every vintage. He loves to cook and so he is unshakeable in his conviction that Riesling is the best choice for its versatility and ability to pair with an eclectic choice of foods. He cooks all types of cuisines to pair with Rieslings.
Below are two Rieslings from Nik Weis St. Urbans-Hof that will delight your palate.
St. Urbans-Hof Estate Dry Riesling 2018 QbA (SRP $18.00)
The Estate dry Riesling has a fun label with an easy screw cap bottle. For this wine, select parcels of old vines are hand harvested from the oldest plots that have lower yields, more intensity and a slightly lower acidity, making it the perfect dry Mosel wine.
Made from 100% organically farmed grapes, this Riesling has notes of lemon, apricot and honey. There is a spicy minerality that is quite alluring. Wonderful zesty acidity coats the palate and leaves a crisp savory finish. It can be served as an aperitif or with sushi, lobster, crab, poultry and Thai cuisine.
St. Urbans-Hof Estate Riesling QbA from Old Vines 2018 (SRP $18.00)
This a light easy drinking wine that is low in alcohol(11%). The Estate Riesling is a traditional Mosel style that is balanced between sweetness and acidity. The QbA indicates a producer’s entry level wine. But this is no ordinary entry level wine. The “Old Vines” are between 30-50 years old from pristine vineyards.
On the nose the wine is intriguingly aromatic and on the palate you get bright freshness with a hint of sweetness giving way to flavors of grapefruit, lemon and blossoms. The delicate sweetness is balanced with the zesty acidity. There is a wonderful minerality that lingers. The wine will pair well with spicy dishes. At $18 it is a wonderful value.
** Wines received as media samples. All opinions are my own.**