James Suckling’s 5 High Schloss Gobelsburg’s Ried Heiligenstein Dry Rieslings

These have been the 5 top-scoring bottles of Schloss Gobelstein Heiligenstein dry riesling, all rated from 99 to 96 factors by the JamesSuckling.com tasting group.

The JamesSuckling.com group did a vertical tasting of Schloss Gobelsburg’s Ried Heiligenstein dry rieslings, relationship to 1971, which have helped cement Michael Moosbrugger’s status as one in every of Austria’s most authentic winemakers.

Schloss Gobelsburg’s Ried Heiligenstein Dry Rieslings

Ried Heiligenstein, one of the top sites in Austria for dry riesling.
This Nineteenth-century tower stands atop the Heiligenstein

Like a number of different European wine-growing nations, Austria has many elderly wineries, however few come near matching the 850-year historical past of Schloss Gobelsburg within the Kamptal appellation of the Danube area. The primary report of its vineyards dates to 1171, making it only a fraction youthful than Burgundy’s famed Clos de Vougeot.

No much less exceptional is the Ried Heiligenstein, one of many prime websites in Austria for dry riesling. In Austria, ried is the official time period meaning single-vineyard website. Heiligenstein is usually incorrectly translated into English as “holy stone”, but it surely really means “stone of the saints”.

Simply over a century in the past, the Heiligenstein was one of many first single vineyards in Austria to get its personal identify on a label, at a time when dry rieslings have been a rarity within the nation and have been a lot wanted. In the present day it has 50 homeowners, and the wines from a minimum of a dozen of them have good reputations.

Such exceptionalism was motive sufficient for Schloss Gobelsburg’s director and winemaker, Michael Moosbrugger, to current a vertical tasting of the vineyard’s dry rieslings from the Heiligenstein going again to the 1971 classic. The tasting befell in London at 67 Pall Mall within the St James space, and it helped cement Moosbrugger’s status as one in every of Austria’s most authentic winemakers.

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Schloss Gobelsburg’s director and winemaker, Michael Moosbrugger
Schloss Gobelsburg’s director and winemaker, Michael Moosbrugger

You’ll be able to inform the Heiligenstein is particular from a substantial distance. Journey from Vienna to the regional centre of Krems on the Danube and you’ll’t miss it. 1 / 4 of an hour earlier than you arrive, it out of the blue looms in your proper, its ridge forming the horizon.

The complete 35-hectare floor of the south- to west-facing Heiligenstein is roofed with slim terraces, lots of which accommodate simply three or 4 rows of vines. Schloss Gobelsburg owns a complete of about 3 hectares divided between two parcels within the south-facing part of the positioning, or a few tenth of the Heiligenstein’s total space. The opposite well-known website within the Schloss Gobelsburg portfolio is the Lamm, which is planted completely with gruner veltliner, Austria’s signature white-wine grape selection.

The bedrock of the Heiligenstein consists of the distinctive Zobing Formation, named after the close by village of Zobing, from the Permian interval (252-299 million years in the past). A very powerful of those is a conglomerate that appears like a mass of huge pebbles set in crudely blended concrete. These pebbles are composed of historical volcanic rhyolite, one of many crystalline igneous rocks the Austrians discuss with as Urgestein.

Within the glass, one of the best dry rieslings from the Heiligenstein are sometimes dramatic, because of their super wet-stone depth, however that is married to appreciable class. Tasted very younger, the Heiligenstein rieslings from some producers could be fairly austere, even steely.

The vineyard-covered Heiligenstein rises above Austria’s Kamptal appellation

The Heiligenstein wines Moosbrugger makes at Schloss Gobelsburg mix the traits typical for the positioning with a beautiful textural richness. They need to enchantment not solely to riesling freaks but in addition to anybody who enjoys cool-climate chardonnay with discreet oak.

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In 1996 on the age of 30, Moosbrugger took a two-generation lease on the property from the monastery of Stift Zwettl, a brief drive to the north. Again then, Moosbrugger’s takeover of the vineyard appeared like a daring transfer. Though he’d apprenticed on the well-known Salomon Undhof and Jamek wineries within the Danube area, he hadn’t studied winemaking and got here from a household of hoteliers within the west of Austria. A era in the past on this conservative space, such a transfer seemed critically eccentric.

Though Moosbrugger didn’t point out it on the tasting, 2021 was additionally the twenty fifth anniversary of his arrival at Schloss Gobelsburg. He did say lots about his wines, and a few of this additionally says deal about him — together with his opinion on whether or not to place nobly rotten fruit within the press or to scrupulously exclude it when making a dry riesling. “When you’re going to make fruit salad, then you definitely don’t begin with rotten fruit,” he defined, earlier than including the caveat, “however there’s no final fact!”

Due to Moosbrugger’s efforts, the Heiligenstein wines of Schloss Gobelsburg have gotten legendary as soon as once more.

The 5 High Bottles of Schloss Gobelsburg’s Heiligenstein Dry Rieslings

These 5 top-scoring bottles of Schloss Gobelstein Heiligenstein dry riesling have been all rated from 99 to 96 factors by the JamesSuckling.com tasting group.

The 5 Top Bottles of Schloss Gobelsburg’s Heiligenstein Dry Rieslings

SCHLOSS GOBELSBURG RIESLING KAMPTAL RIED HEILIGENSTEIN EL 2001
Rating: 99

Very deep and sophisticated with a slew of dried-apricot, candied-citrus and quince-paste aromas. Extremely lengthy and delicate end. An virtually timeless masterpiece.

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SCHLOSS GOBELSBURG RIESLING KAMPTAL RIED HEILIGENSTEIN EL 2010
Rating: 97

On the mouth-filling palate, the ripe fruit and racy acidity are exactly balanced. Very lengthy and exact end with a ton of wet-stone and bergamot character. A few years of life forward of it.

SCHLOSS GOBELSBURG RIESLING KAMPTAL RIED HEILIGENSTEIN EL 1999
Rating: 97

A traditional, mature, high-end Austrian riesling with ravishing ripe-apricot and candied-orange character, plus hints of toasted nuts and bitter chocolate. Drink or maintain.

SCHLOSS GOBELSBURG RIESLING KAMPTAL RIED HEILIGENSTEIN EL 2016
Rating: 96

That is nonetheless fairly yeasty however in a moderately engaging manner. Behind that yeasty creaminess, which can fade considerably with time, is a superb wine that’s deep, agency and sophisticated.

SCHLOSS GOBELSBURG RIESLING KAMPTAL RIED HEILIGENSTEIN EL 2018
Rating: 96

Severe depth right here, but in addition subtlety, within the type of lemon meringue, apple curd, saffron, cardamom, beeswax and honeysuckle. Full-bodied, dense and concentrated, but agile, delicate and racy.


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