2003; a Mosel Magic Vintage?

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2003. Only the patient will find out, but something’s telling me that when we sum the whole thing up, the vintage will be mentioned together with 1959, 1971 and 1976 as one of the long-lived. Now, don’t read this as if I have tasted a whole bunch of wines from the star trilogy, I haven’t. A dozen maybe, but those tasted at 30 years of age still had a vibrant core and years ahead. Will this be the case of 2003 as well?

One that for sure has all the prerequisites to last for decades is the amazing, but a bit atypical, 2003 Graacher Domprobst Riesling Auslese from the master himself, Willi Schaefer. Served blind recently I thought it was a great glass, developing constantly during the evening. Starting out with notes of peaches, grass and spearmint, I quite quickly realized it was a 2003 in the glass, remembering some other wines with that specific and atypical style for Mosel Riesling. Then, after a while came the scents of the modeling clay, green apples, spring honey, white peaches and a cooler appearance. More Mosel-like simply.

Elegant, mineral driven taste with plenty of refreshing acidity, still feeling young and vivid, lime peel, green apples, herbal honey, pineapple liquid and modeling clay. A touch of spearmint on the palate as well before the long, mineral oriented finish. Not as delicate as the 2004 style from Schaefer. Yet. Give this plenty of time in the cellar and drink the 04′s while waiting. They’re beautiful right now.

Willi is the man when it comes to the Graach sites. They’re subtle and lighter in style, if compared to for example the more spicy and concentrated Erdener wines. If you’re into elegance and the magic of ethereal Mosel Riesling, this is your pick.

2003 Graacher Domprobst Riesling Auslese, Willi Schaefer, Mosel, 93-94 p

By the way; how can something with an alcohol content of 7,5 per cent have so much taste and offer a long lasting finish?

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  • http://www.redscreamandriesling.blogspot.com/ Red Scream

    Thanks for pointing out 2003, Niklas! I can only recall tasing riesling wines fron the most recent vintages, starting from 2005 and onwards. 2003 I know virtually nothing about, so there is a gap to be filled. /Ulf

    • http://winevirtuosity.com Niklas Jorgensen

      Think you still can pick up 2003′s around Europe. Or in Mosel for that matter. It’s worth the effort…

  • Werner

    A great thing to do for Mosel-lovers like myself is to subscribe to the brilliant publications from http://www.moselfinewines.com/.

    Free PDF-newsletter drops in your mailbox every two-three months or so, perfect!

    • http://winevirtuosity.com Niklas Jorgensen

      Thanks for this one Werner. Never seen it before. Have you had a lot of ’03′s by the way?

  • Werner

    I don’t think I’ve had any GG or other top wines from the the big guns from the 2003 vintage. A few good midranged wines though, I particularly remember some very interesting dry wines from 2003 tasted last year, for instance from Kees-Kieren, combining the typical Mosel aromas with strawberry (with cream?) after a while in the glass. Very clear, elegant wines in this vintage with beautiful fruit. My cellar is filled with 2007s, the first brilliant vintage after my Mosel fascination startet, and some 2008s. At the moment I’m stocking dry 2009s (availability), and the next years I plan on stocking sweet 2010s. I choose 2001, 2003 and 2005 in restaurants. You should try Fritz Haags 2001 Juffer Sonnenuhr Spatlese, sometimes available in restaurants. Outstanding!

    • http://winevirtuosity.com Niklas Jorgensen

      I love the Haag wines, especially since Oliver Haag took charge. Must have been 6-7 years ago. For example I hold them as one of my favorites in the more difficult 208 vintage. Impressive stuff there…

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