Dr Loosen has been in the same family for more than 200 years and its present guardian, Ernst Loosen, is one of the great characters of the wine world. He assumed ownership of the estate in 1988 and immediately realised that, with ungrafted vines averaging 70 years of age, in some of Germany's best-rated vineyards, gave him the raw materials to create stunningly intense, world-class wines. To achieve this, he dramatically reduced his crop size and stopped all chemical fertilisation, preferring only moderate use of organic fertilisers. And, most importantly, he turned to gentler cellar practices that allow the wine to develop its full potential with a minimum of handling and technological meddling.
100% Riesling from blue Devonian slate soils and ungrafted vines with an average age of 60 years. The vineyard is sustainably farmed, according to strict German environmental regulations. Yields for the 2019 Dr Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese were 50 hl/ha. Selectively hand-harvested grapes underwent cool fermentation in stainless steel tanks and traditional Fuder barrels. Half of the juice was fermented with natural yeasts, the other half with cultured yeasts. Fermentation was arrested by chilling.
Very pretty, and very fine. Sweet green apple and melon, white flowers, almost vanilla I’d say, and a dusting of spice and crushed rocky things and salt. It’s all juicy white fruit with a charming mouth-perfume, spicy and slightly cheesy/savoury, fine chalky texture and sherbetty acidity (and flavour). Slightly creamy feel too. Finish is all spiced sweet apple, and long with it. Ever so tasty. Tasted: Dec 2020; Alcohol: 8%; Price: $65; Closure: Screwcap; Drink: 2020-2030+; Rated: 94+ Points; Gary Walsh; The Wine Front
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