In Germany, around this time of the year, the wine critics publish their ratings.
We were very pleased to see our producers gain so much recognition again this year and here are some highlights for your reading pleasure:
“Mark Barth makes the ‘Sparkling Wine of the Year’!”
The highly regarded Vinum magazine writes that the Hassel Riesling Brut Nature VDP.Grosse Lage 2015 from Wein- und Sektgut Barth from the Rheingau, was able to take the lead in the overall competition. Basically, the Burgundy-based sparkling wines are considered the crown of sparkling wine production but with 96 points, Mark Barth’s sparkling wine simply could not be beaten. “It shows enormous aromatic depth, there are notes of apricot, toffee, yuzu, and brioche. In addition, there is a seductive creaminess on the palate, adding to the tingling freshness of the Riesling. A truly great wine with its never-ending finish – the ‘Sparkling Wine of the Year’!”
1st place with 94 points in the category “The best from Germany Riesling Sekt” 2015 HATTENHEIM HASSEL RIESLING brut nature VDP.GROSSE LAGE®.
1st place with 96 points in the category “Riesling from 36 months yeast storage” and “Sparkling Wine of the Year” 2015 HATTENHEIM HASSEL RIESLING brut nature VDP.GROSSE LAGE®.
2nd place with 91 points in the “Riesling” category RIESLING Extra Brut.
Falstaff magazine then put two of Barth’s Riesling single-vineyard sparkling wines into first place in their Sparkling Special Edition 2022.
1st place with 94 points in the category “The best from Germany Rieslingsekt”: 2015 HATTENHEIM HASSEL RIESLING brut nature VDP.GROSSE LAGE®.
1st place with 94 points in the category “The best from Germany Rieslingsekt”: 2016 HATTENHEIM SCHÜTZENHAUS RIESLING brut nature VDP.ERSTE LAGE®.
And then Focus Magazine also voted the SCHÜTZENHAUS RIESLING brut nature VDP.ERSTE LAGE® into their Nr. 1 spot!
Vinum magazine awarded Carolin Guillot and Oliver Spanier Riesling of the Year for the Mölsheimer Zellerweg Am Schwarzen Herrgott GG 2021!
The couple holds some of the highest wine rankings in Germany, including 97 Robert Parker points, 97 James Suckling points and 18.5 Jancis Robinson points for wines made from grapes of their top grand cru sites.
The Estate is only one of four Rheinhessen producers that achieved the highest 5 Star Rating (Spitzenbetrieb) in the 2023 Vinum Wineguide.
BÜRGERSPITAL ZUM HEILIGEN GEIST:
The flagship GG Silvaner Würzburger Stein-Harfe won ‘Best Silvaner of Germany’ in Falstaff magazine with 95 points. An astonishing success that was followed by a 4 Star Rating in the Vinum Wineguide 2023 noting a wide range of wines of the highest quality, a Spitzenweingut!
The Stein-Harfe also holds the rare high rating of 18.5 Jancis Robinson points.
One of our highest decorated producers this year, the awards keep rolling in with James Suckling ratings in the mid to high 90s:
“The three chardonnays (…) are game-changing wines for this grape in Germany.”
Score 97 2019 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Chardonnay “super-elegant and super-focused on the very concentrated palate”
Score 95 2019 Roter Berg Kenzingen Chardonnay “the chalky freshness [is] lifting the generous body very neatly”
Score 95 2019 Schlossberg Staufen Chardonnay “Smells and tastes like a perfectly ripe Amalfi lemon, but with a subtle, flinty undertone.”
Score 96 2019 Schlossberg Achkarren Grauburgunder “subtle spiciness, (…) never before encountered in wines of this category”
Score 95 2019 Sommerhalde Bombach Grauburgunder “super-long and very clean, chalky finish”
Score 95 2019 Schlossberg Staufen Weissburgunder “stunning interplay of vanilla oak with cool white-peach and sliced-pear character”
4.5 Stars in the Vinum Wineguide 2023 with 5 wines in the Top 10 and the amazing award for “German Producer of the Year!”
1. Platz “Andere Rotweine”: 95 Punkte 2020 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Cabernet Franc
2. Platz Weiße Burgundersorten: 96 Punkte 2020 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Chardonnay
4. Platz Weiße Burgundersorten: 95 Punkte 2020 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Weißer Burgunder
5. Platz “Andere Rotweine”: 94 Punkte 2020 Schlossberg Achkarren Syrah
8. Platz “Andere Rotweine”: 93 Punkte 2020 Schlossberg Staufen Cabernet Sauvignon
95 Punkte 2020 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Spätburgunder
Deutscher Rotweinpreis Vinum (Cabernet category):
1. Platz: 2019 Schlossberg Staufen Cabernet Sauvignon
2. Platz: 2019 Kaiserberg Herbolzheim Cabernet Franc
4 Stars Eichelmann 2022 and 2023!
4 Stars fallstaff 2022 and 2023!
Decanter World wine awards 2022 (3 Gold)!
Gut Hermannsberg probably achieved the greatest result with their 2017 Kupfergrube GG RESERVE that was voted among the world’s Top 100 wines of the year with 98 points. Incredibly, 32,000 wines were tasted by James Suckling and his team for this list. An amazing award, extremely successful and further confirmation that bottle aging is a great strength of the Rieslings from Gut Hermannsberg.
2018 Riesling Brut 90 Points
2021 Just Riesling 90 Points
2021 7 Terroirs 93 Points
2021 Vom Schiefer 93 Points
2021 Vom Vulkan 94 Points
2021 Steinterrassen 94 Points
2021 Rotenberg GG 95 Points
2021 Steinberg GG 96 Points
2021 Felsenberg GG 96 Points
2020 Bastei GG 97 Points
2017 Hermannsberg GG Reserve 97 Points
2017 Kupfergrube GG 98 Points (Top 100 Wines of the World 2022)
The Sommelier magazin saw it similarly in the tasting of the VDP.Grosse Gewächse: “a producer that tops all accomplishments, Gut Hermannsberg only releases its two top vineyards wines after five years. The 2017 Hermannsberg GG RESERVE was perhaps the most balanced Riesling of the entire Tasting, and definitely the most beautiful to drink at this point in time (97 points)”. This was the highest score of the tasting and the 2017 Kupfergrube GG RESERVE achieved 96 points!
The 2023 Vinum Wineguide confirmed the high level of the previous year and notes: “Gut Hermannsberg not only invested in buildings and vineyards, but above all in wine quality right from the start. The quality was at the highest ever, better than last year and reassured us to award “Winemaker of the Year” to cellar master Karsten Peter, who was able to seamlessly continue the outstanding performance of the previous year. Also, the Gutswein Riesling 7 Terroirs convinces with its typical minerality, a great wine for every day.”
Alexander Stodden was voted ‘Spitzenbetrieb’ in the Ahr gaining the top spot as the only producer with 4.5 Stars.
4.5 Stars, Vinum: Wine Guide Germany 2022
“Alexander Stodden has been among the absolute top on the Ahr for some time. The quality of a Pinot Noir is not defined by maximum concentration, but freedom, inner density and complexity are the true parameters. And Alexander Stodden masters playing with these elements like only a few others.”
Eichelmann: Germany’s wines 2022, Excellent, world class!
The Eichelmann awarded Jean Stodden five stars again this year.
“Stodden wines are clearly vinified for durability. The Spätburgunder Alte Reben is one of the great wines of the vintage in Germany!”
Gourmet: Germany’s best winemakers 2022
“Excellent, 5 Stars! Alexander Stodden reminds us of a great pianist this year. He masters the Pinot Noir keyboard in its entirety.”
5 Stars, Falstaff Wine Guide 2022
“All wines over 90 points. It characterizes the perfectionism of Britta & Alexander Stodden, as they improvised the pressing in autumn 2021 after the devastating water damage in the winery. The “Alte Reben” have a material depth that at the same time radiates complete self-evidence. This is just great!”
James Suckling ranked the Thörle 2021 Hölle Riesling in their Top 100 Wines of the world 2022 list with 98 Points.
Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate rated the Thörle wines with up to 94 points.
Please note that all of the above is by all means not a complete list but snippets of what we have observed over the recent weeks, and we wanted to share this with you.
It is your decision what tastes good and what ratings a wine deserves but these critics can sometimes help us guide us into the right direction and we welcome you to taste any of our wines and decide for yourself what it feels like to enjoy a highly rated wine.
We are beyond proud and excited about our producers’ achievements in getting recognized for their terroir and wine making skills. We have worked for decades to find these producers and invest heavily to bring them to your attention and dinner table. We hope we can share with you this excitement when you had a chance to explore some of these wines.
The Wunderwein Team