Dr Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett MAGNUM 2017

This is an excellent Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett. Excellent citrus and lime, divine acid balance and poise. Such a fun wine!

The 1st frost to hit the Mosel in 40 years arrived in 2017! Crops were low and quality high. This is an excellent Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett. Sometimes I find Kabinett wines difficult in their youth. The puppy fat they can have requires patience to be absorbed into the wine for the level of vinosity to build, the wine to harmonise, layer up and deliver. The 2017 looks much closer to that turning point than others I’ve seen in recent history. It took me back to a bottle of 2008 I drank a couple of months ago, that had resolved all it’s issues with youth. I can’t wait to see where this ends up! Guess I’ll have to though. Excellent citrus and lime, divine acid balance and poise. Such a fun wine.

This is the perfect comparison to Gunderloch’s Jean-Baptiste Riesling Kabinett from 2017. With it’s extra 2.5% alcohol, half the residual sugar and 1.5g/L less acid yet both are balanced. The extra fermentation raising the alcohol adds vinosity and more immediate approachability to the wine.

My tip, grab a bottle of Gunderloch Kabinett and a bottle of this, sit back and enjoy!

$98ea in any 3+, $94ea in any 6+

Available on backorder

Why is this Wine so Yummy?

Aged Kabinett is the BOMB!

With the addition of a box of 2017 to my personal cellar, I have realised a Wine Life Goal of having 15 vintages of Dr Loosen Kabinett in the cellar!

Having Dr Loosen Kabinett back to 2002 means I can now drink these delicious Rizza’s at a beautiful mature, yet still fresh and youthful stage in their life!
Kabinett from the Mosel starts life on release with little puppy fat, and, an infantile, raw, primary nature & often are a little closed.

Between 3-8 years the puppy fat drops, they become more vinous & expressive, they relax and harmonise.

From 8-15 years they really start to layer up with secondary characters building.

Last night I hoovered the 2004 in the pic. Delicious, such a textural seamless wine. Complexity levels were really popping up. It still has plenty of life in it!

Ernie Loosen reckons the Kabinetts easily make 30 years.

Me, well, I’m just stoked to have a permanent supply of 15 year old Loosen Kabinett. Next on the list do the same for Loosen’s neighbour, Prüm, and, for the Rheinhessen duo of Keller & Gunderloch!

About the Wine

Famous “sundial” vineyard has lightest soil of all vineyards on long hillside from Bernkastel to Wehlen.

Grape Variety: 100% Riesling

Soil Type: Blue Devonian slate

Age of Vines: 60 years average; ungrafted

Viticulture: Sustainable, according to strict German environmental regulations

Average Yield: 50 hl/ha Harvest (much lower in 2017) Method: Selective hand picking

Vinification: Cool fermentation in a combination of stainless steel tanks and traditional Fuder barrels; half fermented with natural yeasts, half with cultured yeasts; fermentation stopped by chilling

Alcohol: 8.0%

Residual Sweetness: 47.2 grams/liter (5g higher than 2016 works with the higher acid)

Total Acidity: 9.6 grams/liter (1.2g higher than 2016)

Dr Loosen

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 60 years old in some of Germany’s best-rated vineyards, he had the raw materials to create stunningly intense, world-class wines. To achieve this, Erni dramatically reduced his crop size and ceased using chemical fertilisers, preferring only moderate use of organic fertilisers. And, most importantly, he turned to gentler cellar practices that allow the wine to develop to its full potential with a minimum of handling and technological meddling.

View productKabinett or Lightly Sweet

Alcohol: ~8 % Acid:  ~8.5 g/L Sugar:  ~40-45 g/L

Of the styles including sugar, the freshest style is Kabinett with little influence from Botrytis.

The standard line for the German’s being that where the English offer tea to guests in the afternoon the German’s offer Kabinett or Spätlese wines, more akin to a table wine. That said I devoured a Wagner-Stemple Kabinett, with pasta and cheese on a 38°C day in Melbourne, perfection!

You can see the different condition of the grapes and the detailed selection process required to produce the different styles in the film below. Starts at 2mins 30sec.

The Mosel

In general, you’ll find the wines from the Mosel, particularly the Wehlener Sonnenuhr vineyard, to finer, more restrained than the wines of the Rheinhessen.

Map by Fernando Beteta, MS @fernandobeteta on Twitter

The Mosel river snakes its way between dramatically steep, slatey slopes from just south of the ancient Roman city of Trier to Koblenz to the north, where it empties into the Rhine. The valley is home to many of the world’s most famous Riesling vineyards. The wines are richly fragrant, pale to golden in colour and light-bodied with lively acidity. The slaty soil lends a distinctive taste to wines which range from fine and fruity to earthy or flinty, often with a hint of spritz.

In the video below Ernie Loosen talks about the famed Wehlener Sonnenuhr vineyards. Checkout:

  • How ridiculously steep the site is!
  • Note the slate that makes up such a high percentage of the ground.
  • How much manual labour has to go into working the site.
  • How small the bunches are and how few there are per vine.
  • The grapes that look rotten, but actually, have a beautiful natural Botrytis infection or Noble Rot, that will impart so much personality & texture into the wine.
  • The natural river fogs create the perfect environment for Noble Rot, like the caves of Roquefort for its delicious blue moulds.

92 Points

“Succulent and spitzy with very vibrant acidity with delicate peaches, apples and floras of some complexity. A long and fine finish with a ton of minerality.”

Stuart Piggot for James Suckling

Where in the world does the magic happen?

Weingut Dr. Loosen, B53, Bernkastel-Kues, Germany