2004 Kiedricher Grafenberg Auslese Robert Weil

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Average critic rating : 91.0 points



Weil’s 2004 Kiedricher Grafenberg Riesling Auslese was produced in rather large quantities – 7,000 375 ml bottles and 3,000 750s – yet its 130 Oechsle and sheer viscosity suggest, correctly, that it is a Riesling of Beerenauslese concentration. Over-ripe pit fruits, honey, musk, and a faintly sweaty, briny note pour off the edge of the glass. The dense, creamy palate impression is like a paste of quince and peach whipped into vanilla and fresh cream. Yet for all of the wine’s decadent richness, there is an underlying note one can only describe as “wet stone” as well as a smoky manifestation of botrytis hovering over the entire proceedings. Over-ripe peach, quince jelly and musk dominate the long, sultry, rather candified and comfiture-like finish. If you are looking for clarity or precision, refreshment or crispness, this is not your wine. But it delivers abundant pleasures of a posh, plush sort. ||Wilhelm Weil insists that his 2004s are more consistently ripe than were his 2001s, since the accumulation of sugars this year was more gradual and there was not the extreme contrast presented by a cool, rainy September and a warm October of 2001. “Two thousand four, after all,” he says, “displays the classic virtues we theoretically ascribe to Riesling: long ripening, late harvest, and conditions on the climatic margins.” I found considerable qualitative variation this year, though, on account of factors other than sheer ripeness. That said, the outstanding 2004 Weil Rieslings – and these are in the clear majority – include some breathtaking successes. Furthermore, the quantities behind some of the most exciting of these are far larger than in any previous vintages of this estate.||Imported by Rudi Wiest, Cellars International, Carlsbad, CA; tel. (800) 596-9463 Wine Advocate.October, 2005


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