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Rudi Pichler Kollmutz Smaragd Gruner Veltliner 2022

ID No: 450412
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 97 Points
Country:Austria
Region:Wachau
Winery:Rudi Pichler
Grape Type:Gruner Veltliner
Organic:Yes
Vintage:2022
Bottle Size:750 ml
Product Description

Rudi Pichler Kollmutz Smaragd Gruner Veltliner is made from 100 percent Gruner Veltliner. 

Rudi Pichler is among the elite growers of the Wachau producing wines of precision, power, and longevity. Grüner Veltliner and Riesling make up 95% of the production with the remaining 5% shared between Weißburgunder and Roter Veltliner. Rudi Pichler belongs to the prestigious Vinea Wachau and vinifies under the strict parameters of their codex.

Yields are kept low between 30 and 35 hectoliters per hectare with botrytis carefully removed by hand.  Grapes are crushed by foot and receive between three and 36 hours of maceration on the skins. Vinification is entirely in stainless-steel tanks and malolactic fermentation is avoided.

Kollmütz is a terraced vineyard in Wösendorf sitting between 200 and 400 meters of elevation. The soils of Kollmütz developed from an ancient landslide resulting in chaotic layers of rock and boulders. The vineyard is particularly rich in magnesium and iron. Wines from Kollmütz are typically linear, dense, and intensely mineral in character.

Grüner Veltliner is the signature grape of Austria and produces a dry white wine with savory aromas, spicy flavors, and good acidity. Grüner Veltliner Smaragd from the Wachau is a full-bodied wine and is rich in style with notes of stone fruit, lemon, radish, and arugula.


Review:

I have heard gruner veltliner dismissed for supposedly not being elegant, but this is an extremely elegant example! Very complex nose of snow peas, green beans, wild herbs and green pepper. On the medium-bodied palate, this remarkable gruner veltliner has a discreet succulence, but what makes it amazing is the way it glides so gracefully over the palate, then splash lands in a deep pool of wet stone minerality. Underplayed power and concentration!

-James Suckling 97 Points

Winery: Rudi Pichler

Rudi Pichler is among the elite growers of the Wachau producing wines of precision, power, and longevity. The cellar is based in the village of Wösendorf where generations of Pichlers have tended vines since 1731. Rudolph Pichler, III took over the winery in 1997 and has since expanded the vineyards and constructed a modern cellar in 2004. Grüner Veltliner and Riesling make up 95% of the production with the remaining 5% shared between Weißburgunder and Roter Veltliner. Rudi Pichler belongs to the prestigious Vinea Wachau and vinifies under the strict parameters of their codex. He was awarded Falstaff’s Vintner of the Year in 2010. 


Weingut Rudi Pichler consists of 37 acres spread between Wösendorf, Joching, Weißenkirchen, and Mautern. Wösendorf and Joching lie in the heart of the Wachau Valley where south-facing terraces look down at the Danube River. Here, rieden such as Kirchweg, Hochrain, and Kollmütz are marked by occasional deposits of loess over base rock. Rudi produces crystal-clear expressions of Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, and Weißburgunder from these sites. Directly east of Joching is Weißenkirchen, home to the famous rieden of Steinriegl and Achleithen, two distinctive Riesling sites with calcareous and weathered gneiss, respectively. Rudi also maintains a small vineyard of Roter Veltliner across the river in Mautern.

“I’m a wine caretaker not a winemaker,” is Rudi’s credo, placing the intensity of work in the vineyards at the foundation of his philosophy. Rudi wants vineyard and varietal expression to be as clear as possible so yields are kept low between 30 and 35 hectoliters per hectare with harvest and botrytis carefully removed by hand. Grapes are crushed by foot and receive between three and 36 hours of maceration on the skins depending on the vintage and style. “The skin has information about the specific place where it is from,” says Rudi. Vinification is entirely in stainless-steel tanks and malolactic fermentation is avoided. The resulting wines are pure, dense, and taut with energy.


 


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Rudi Pichler Kollmutz Smaragd Gruner Veltliner 2021

Rudi Pichler Kollmutz Smaragd Gruner Veltliner is made from 100 percent Gruner Veltliner. 

Rudi Pichler is among the elite growers of the Wachau producing wines of precision, power, and longevity. Grüner Veltliner and Riesling make up 95% of the production with the remaining 5% shared between Weißburgunder and Roter Veltliner. Rudi Pichler belongs to the prestigious Vinea Wachau and vinifies under the strict parameters of their codex.

Yields are kept low between 30 and 35 hectoliters per hectare with botrytis carefully removed by hand.  Grapes are crushed by foot and receive between three and 36 hours of maceration on the skins. Vinification is entirely in stainless-steel tanks and malolactic fermentation is avoided.

Kollmütz is a terraced vineyard in Wösendorf sitting between 200 and 400 meters of elevation. The soils of Kollmütz developed from an ancient landslide resulting in chaotic layers of rock and boulders. The vineyard is particularly rich in magnesium and iron. Wines from Kollmütz are typically linear, dense, and intensely mineral in character.

Grüner Veltliner is the signature grape of Austria and produces a dry white wine with savory aromas, spicy flavors, and good acidity. Grüner Veltliner Smaragd from the Wachau is a full-bodied wine and is rich in style with notes of stone fruit, lemon, radish, and arugula.


Review:

Grüner Veltliner’s bright acidity and savory character make it an ideal partner to mildly spiced Vietnamese, Thai, and Chinese flavors. Fish and shellfish are accented by Grüner Veltliner’s citrus and mineral profile while its acidity cuts the richness of pork or ham. It can also work well with foods that are difficult to pair such as bitter greens and asparagus.

Incredibly deep and youthful nose of the most amazing herb garden you can imagine! So richly textured, concentrated and incredibly precise that you wonder which way to turn! The incredibly long and invigorating finish leaves you literally breathless. Enormous aging potential.

-James Suckling 98 Points

 98 Points
Rudi Pichler Grüner Veltliner Ried Hochrain Smaragd 2022

Rudi Pichler is among the elite growers of the Wachau producing wines of precision, power, and longevity. Grüner Veltliner and Riesling make up 95% of the production with the remaining 5% shared between Weißburgunder and Roter Veltliner. Rudi Pichler belongs to the prestigious Vinea Wachau and vinifies under the strict parameters of their codex.

Yields are kept low between 30 and 35 hectoliters per hectare with botrytis carefully removed by hand.  Grapes are crushed by foot and receive between three and 36 hours of maceration on the skins. Vinification is entirely in stainless-steel tanks and malolactic fermentation is avoided.

Hochrain, a name meaning "high place," is a southeast-facing terraced vineyard in Wösendorf sitting between 200 and 300 meters of elevation. The vineyard consists of an unusually high content of loess, a mineral-laden soil that produces wines that are especially broad and rich.

Review:

“A stunning wine for this grape that is also rather easy to understand. The Reine Claude plum and peppery nose is complex, but already charming. As exciting as the simultaneously creamy and succulent mid-palate is, what makes this medium- to full-bodied gruner veltliner really stand out is the extremely long, crushed rock finish.”

James Suckling 96 Points

 96 Points
Rudi Pichler Kirchweg Riesling Smaragd 2022

Wachau Riesling is dry and often defined by high levels of dry extract (due to a lengthy ripening period) and a pleasing freshness (due to dramatic temperature swings between day and night). Sedimentary soils of sand and stone give Kirchweg Riesling a dense mineral texture and fine fruity flavors.


Review:

Welcome to the dark side of Wachau dry riesling! Deep and delicately spicy nose that’s full of mystery. Incredible concentration and massive wet stone character on the very precise medium-bodied palate. Radical mineral energy and garden herb freshness at the enormously long and tightly-focused finish.

-James Suckling 98 Points

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Rudi Pichler Wosendorfer Kirchweg Riesling Smaragd 2021

Wachau Riesling is dry and often defined by high levels of dry extract (due to a lengthy ripening period) and a pleasing freshness (due to dramatic temperature swings between day and night). Sedimentary soils of sand and stone give Kirchweg Riesling a dense mineral texture and fine fruity flavors.


Review:

I love the deep and delicate, peachy nose of this extremely attractive Wachau dry riesling. Wonderful fresh fruit with a touch of mint and lemon balm on the ripe but rather sleek and very precise palate. The power and concentration show themselves first at the stunningly long and pristine finish.

-James Suckling 96 Points

 96 Points
Weingut Prager Zwerithaler Gruner Veltliner Kammergut Smaragd 2022


Franz Prager, co-founder of the Vinea Wachau, had already earned a reputation for his wines when Toni Bodenstein married into the family. Bodenstein’s passion for biodiversity and old terraces, coupled with brilliant winemaking, places Prager in the highest echelon of Austrian producers.

Smaragd is a designation of ripeness for dry wines used exclusively by members of the Vinea Wachau. The wines must have minimum alcohol of 12.5%. The grapes are hand-harvested, typically in October and November, and are sent directly to press where they spontaneously ferment in stainless-steel tanks.

Zwerithaler is a sub-site of Buschenberg and sits to the east of Weißenkirchen. The name Zwerithaler, meaning "nestled between the valleys," is a near monopole of Weingut Prager. It has a complex soil of paragneiss with alternating layers of dark and calcareous rock.  Zwerithaler Kammergut is a 0.34-hectare parcel planted before WWI. The wine from these ungrafted, 100-year-old vines was bottled separately by Prager for the first time in 2015.


Light greenish yellow, silver reflections. Fine savory, delicate nuances of anise, tobacco notes, delicate yellow fruit, a touch of mango and honey blossom. Full-bodied, juicy white apple fruit, well-integrated, silky acidity structure, finesse and long persistence, saline finish, lingers for minutes, Veltliner at its best.

-Falstaff 99 Points

"The aromas of this old-vine gruner veltliner leap out and shake you to the core. Full-bodied and full of weighty and balanced layers of papayas, mangoes, nectarines, chives, white tea and oranges. Fantastic concentration, giving so much pleasure already, but it will keep blossoming if you give it time. From vines planted in 1907. Sustainable. Drink or hold." 

-James Suckling 98 Points

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Weingut Prager Stockkultur Achleiten Gruner Veltliner Smaragd 2020

Weingut Prager Stockkultur Achleiten Gruner Veltliner Smaragd is made from 100 percent Gruner Veltliner. 


Franz Prager, co-founder of the Vinea Wachau, had already earned a reputation for his wines when Toni Bodenstein married into the family. Bodenstein’s passion for biodiversity and old terraces, coupled with brilliant winemaking, places Prager in the highest echelon of Austrian producers.

Smaragd is a designation of ripeness for dry wines used exclusively by members of the Vinea Wachau. The wines must have minimum alcohol of 12.5%. The grapes are hand-harvested, typically in October and November, and are sent directly to press where they spontaneously ferment in stainless-steel tanks.

Stockkultur is a 0.3-hectare plot at the top of Achleiten and was purchased by Toni Bodenstein in 2005. The name refers to the old style of training each vine to a single stake; the traditional method of vine cultivation in the Wachau before the 1950s. The vines planted in 1938 are among the oldest in the Wachau. 

Tasting Notes:

Prager’s stylistic signature is that of aromatic complexity coupled with power and tension. High-density planting and long hang times ensure ripe fruit flavors and concentration, yet allowing leaves to shade the fruit lend vibrant aromatics of grasses, herbs, and wildflowers. Minerality is a constant feature of any Prager wine.

Food Pairing:

With minimum alcohol of 12.5%, Grüner Veltliner Smaragd is a concentrated and full-bodied dry white wine. Its intensity of flavor and ripeness of fruit make it ideal with high-integrity ingredients such as seared white fish or sautéed spring vegetables. Grüner Veltliner is a classic accompaniment to Wiener Schnitzel.

Review:


From vines planted in 1937 and picked as the first of the Smaragd wines, the 2020 Ried Achleiten Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Stockkultur (planted with 15,000 vines per hectare) opens with a spectacular deep and complex but refined, fresh and flinty bouquet with intense, ripe pear and biscuit aromas. On the palate, this is a dense and lush yet pure, elegant and complex, wide and powerful but also mineral Achleiten with a long, finely tannic and still sweet finish (due to more than 30 grams per liter of dry extract). Tasted at the domaine in June 2021.

At Prager, I could not determine that 2020 would be inferior to the 2019 vintage; on the contrary, the 2020 Smaragd wines fascinated me enormously in their clear, cool, terroir-tinged way. A 38% loss had occurred mainly because of the hail on August 22, although predominantly in the Federspiel or Riesling vineyards. There was no damage in the top vineyards such as Ried Klaus, Achleiten or Zwerithaler. "Interestingly, the vines are in agony for about two weeks after the hail. There was no more growth, no development of ripeness and sugar," reports Toni Bondenstein. The Veltliner then recovered earlier, while even picking a Riesling Federspiel in October was still a struggle. "Why Riesling reacted more intensively to the hail, I don't know myself either," says Bodenstein. Whole clusters were pressed to preserve acidity and to compensate for the lower extract, and compared to 2019, the 2020s were left on their lees longer. In June, however, the 20s in particular showed outstanding early shape.

-Wine Advocate 96 Points

 Wine Advocate: 96
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