This was a very pleasant bottle but I expect more from Dönnhoff. There was peachy white fruit, attractive herbal and spicy notes, minerals and touches of the usual hydrocarbons, which were all good. However, there was less acidity and backbone than I like in Riesling which made the wine subjectively quite sweet and therefore a difficult pairing.
Peach, pear, developed smoky and creamy flavours, and sweeter honeyed elements all coming together seamlessly on the nose and palate. There's plenty of development to the flavours but still great freshness to the fruit, and it's at that point where everything's coming together into a whole that's greater than the sum of all parts. Fantastic.
Straw yellow color. Medium intensity aroma, of lemon, kerosene, pear and geraniums. On arrival, an acidic lift helps propel this wine into a balanced, moderately intense experience. Some warmth suggesting smoke of a wood fire. Complex, mid-life, neither fully developed not primarily fruit-driven. Medium finish. Bottle #5 of six.
I suppose 12 years in a bottle would make me grumpy too, but it took much longer than I would have expected for this wine to come out of its shell. For a good 90 minutes plus it was really soft and lacking in any palate presence or definition. Then some magic happened, and the fruit came out to play with a finishing tactile acidity (slightly disconnected though - like the sting of too tart lemonade) that gave it more than sufficient life to accompany my fish dinner. On its own it really shone though, as its delicate expression was not competing with other elements for the spotlight. Cherry fruit, honeyed peach and warm, washed stones all come together near an old wood fire. Very fine, if not the most attention grabbing wine in the world - that's 1999 for you.
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(Dönnhoff Niederhäuser Hermannshöhle Riesling Spätlese) A fine, straw-green colour here. The nose carries lots of spiced lime fruit, with a sweet honeyed edge, and plenty of fine, slatey minerality too. Lovely depth and weight on the palate, with a fine textural quality alongside, tense and minerally despite the sweet fruit and residual sugar. Creamy, with honeydew melon and star fruit, very much a yellow-green fruit profile with a creamy coating, as I noted last time. But there is a fine textural quality to it as well. Overall, delicious. Happily, I think I still have another bottle. This is a wine with years and years ahead of it yet.
(Dönnhoff Niederhäuser Hermannshöle Riesling Spätlese) A lovely, vibrant hue, firmly in the green part of the spectrum. Lots of plump fruit on the nose, a little nuance of lychee and star fruit, with a subtle mineral vein behind. Very fresh but fleshy and a little creamy even, certainly coming through on the midpalate there is a note of fresh cream swirled with green fruits. Lovely acidity giving it a clean, balanced poise. Fairly delicious, minerally, still quite primary, with plenty of potential.
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