Wine Blogging Wednesday #45: Old World Riesling

By Kori ~ May 7th, 2008.

Tim Elliott of Winecast is our host for this month’s edition of Wine Blogging Wednesday. He selected his favorite white variety, Riesling, as our subject. However, we were not to drink just any Riesling but specifically Riesling from the Old World, from places such as Germany, Austria, or France’s Alsace region. This area of the world is known for producing Rieslings that are very interesting and long-lived. If you think of Riesling as only being a sweet wine, think again. Old World Rieslings run the gamut from extremely dry to sickeningly sweet.

20080507_dragonstone.jpgTo be perfectly honest, my experience with Old World Riesling is extremely limited so this was a great opportunity to try something that has not been in my regular repertoire. I picked up two different bottles so that we could have a blind tasting. One of them, the 2006 Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Drachenstein Riesling “Dragonstone,” we had a couple years ago in a previous vintage. The other was new to us, the 2004 Studert-Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spatlese, but had been featured in the newsletter for a local wine shop.

20080507_studertprum.jpgUnfortunately, I was disappointed with both of these wines. They were both good but certainly nothing spectacular. The four Wine Peeps were split two to two on which one we liked better. Given that I have other white wines at this price point that I like much better, it is doubtful that I would buy either of these again. Since I have heard such great things about Old World Rieslings, and German Rieslings in particular, I do plan to try others in the future. I am not going to let this one experience color my opinion of all German Rieslings. And I do think people who have a different palate than I do, especially those new to wine, may find these two wines enjoyable (particularly the Dragonstone).

2006 Josef Leitz Rudesheimer Drachenstein Riesling “Dragonstone” (Rheingau, Germany): Pale yellow with green tinges. Aromas of pear, apricot, and lemon zest. Very fruity with flavors of pear and cantaloupe. Tastes a lot like sparkling pear cider. Off-dry (not too dry, not too sweet) with a weak finish. Probably very appealing to someone new to wine. A pleasant sipper on a hot, summer day.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to Buy: Esquin (Seattle), $14.99; Available elsewhere, $13 to $18

2004 Studert-Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spatlese (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany): Golden with slight green tinges. Smells like spent firecrackers with a hint of dirty diapers. Citrus fruits (especially clementines) and minerality on the palate. Off-dry, good acidity, and a nice finish. More interesting and more to it than the Dragonstone.
Quality: 3 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Where to Buy: Esquin (Seattle), $14.99; Available elsewhere, $15 to $19

What is the best German Riesling that you have ever had?

Filed under: German Wine, Riesling, White Wine, Wine Blogging Wednesday, Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. Tim | May 7th, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Sorry to hear your wines were only so-so. I’m sure you’ll find a ton of other options to try once I post up the summary later this week.


    Tim Elliott