Wine Advocate 94
"From fruit Nik Weis says was virtually botrytis-free, his St. Urbans-Hof 2009 Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Auslese (from the Zickelgarten) smells predictably of orange, grapefruit, and apple, here in marmalade, pink, and jellied forms respectively, wreathed as well in musky narcissus perfume. Almost custard-like in palate richness and density, yet shot through with refreshing acidity and finishing with levity and remarkable brightness as well as lusciousness, this is a great candidate for 25-30 years’ cellaring … just don’t miss out on regular rewards along the way! “At this level of ripeness” – or at least, from Bockstein! – “Riesling becomes a bouquet-variety,” remarks Weis. Yet no so-called aroma-variety delivers this kind of finesse; mouthwateringly ripe fruit acidity; and sense of interactive finishing complexity of mineral, floral, spice and fruit element."
St. Urbans-HofView all from St. Urbans-Hof
For our family, wine has been at the heart of life for generations. Our deep respect for the traditions of our region remains, as ever, the guarantee for the quality of our wines.
In our endeavours we give highest priority to maintaining the egological balance of our vineyards, in the belief that as winemakers we must recognize and respect the fragile unity of viticulture and nature.
St. Urbans-Hof employs traditional methods of wine growing and winemaking which have been used in the Mosel and Saar Valleys for centuries, some of which date back to the Romans. For example, the vines are grown on the traditional single-post 'Heart-binding' trellis system, whereby the canes are tied in the shape of a heart.
Also, organic fertilizers are utilized in order to maintain the natural balance of the soil. Most importantly, yields are kept at low levels in order to achieve intense and well-structured wines. For optimal flavour development, leaves are thinned and grapes are harvested as late as possible to allow for maximum ripening. All grapes are hand picked and carried from the vineyard in traditional shoulder-mounted containers called 'hotten' to ensure optimal fruit quality.
Just as important as the great length taken to deliver the best possible fruit from the vineyard is the careful attention given to the proper traetment of the grapes by cellarmaster Rudolf Hoffmann. The grapes are lightly crushed, after which they remain on the skins for a short period to ensure the complete release of aromas into the juice.
After this, the pulp of skins and juice is gently pressed and fermented in stainless steel tanks at cool cellar temperatures to fully capture the aromas, flavours and delicate natural spritz of the Riesling grape. The wines are then transferred into traditional 1000 litre 'Fuder' barrels for several months to harmonize, after which they are lightly filtered and bottled.