“Yields were a disaster, but the way the wines turned out healed us!” jokes Theresa Breuer. “We are super happy with the vintage, which shows a lot of tension and inner density.”
Like the vintage that preceded it, 2019 was warm in the Rheingau. However, the vegetative cycle didn’t kick off crazily early and it wasn’t sweltering hot during harvest. The dry conditions caused the vines to produce tiny grapes that were full of concentration with pretty tight acidity. A happy combination.
For an estate that is the model of focus and consistency – Theresa been the spearhead alongside faithful vineyard manager Hermann Schmoranz and cellarmaster Markus Lundén for 17 years now – recent years have seen more than their fair share of changes.
The team has renovated its historic cellars and added bottle storage at the winery and Vinothek that are somewhat improbably ensconced among Rüdesheim’s often bustling streets.
Even more exciting is Georg Breuer’s foray into new vineyard territory, with the 2019 purchase of 7.5 hectares from cousins in Lorch. “The last time we started to work with a new terroir was 1990 in Rauenthal,” says Theresa. “And now, almost 30 years later, we’ve stepped into the western corner of the region, which somehow more feels like Mittelrhein then Rheingau!”
With this new land comes a new grand cru: Pfaffenwies. Theresa’s first Riesling from the site is included in this shipment of ‘19s. “Pfaffenwies is a super exciting experience for us,” she says. “The soil is full of slate and quartzite, and the site stretches straight from the riverside to the top of the slope with a southwest orientation. The structure of the wine is very crystalline and almost a bit salty, so it matches our taste in Riesling pretty well.”
2019 Georg Breuer Rüdesheim Estate Riesling RRP $49
Georg Breuer’s village Rieslings represent different attributes of the vineyard sites in Rüdesheim and Rauenthal through character and palate. Rüdesheim brings strong minerality and stone fruit aromas from steep slate and quartz soil.
At once generous, yet fine and polished, this is a pretty serious wine for the village-wine category with a lot of depth at the finish, where positive tannins and a slate-like quality add some real complexity. From organically grown grapes with Fair’n Green certification. Drink or hold. Screw cap. 93 points. Stuart Pigott, jamessuckling.com August 2020
2019 Georg Breuer Terra Montosa Riesling RRP $75
The grapes for this wine are sourced from the second-best parcels of the grand cru-classified vineyard sites in Rüdesheim and Rauenthal. Here deep phyllite, clay and quartzite slate soils prevail. The Latin name “Montosa” hints at the mountainous earth of the steep vineyard sites.
This is a bit closed and, therefore, not one of the 2019s that leap into your face. Yet, it has really impressive depth, is precisely proportioned and has a lot of finesse at the very long finish. Try to be patient, if you want the best from this delicate masterpiece. From organically grown grapes with Fair’n Green certification. Drink or hold. 95 points. Stuart Pigott, jamessuckling.com August 2020
2019 Georg Breuer Berg Rottland Riesling RRP $160
Parcels of the Berg Rottland vineyard site stretching into the village of Rüdesheim predominantly consist of deep loess soils. Elsewhere shallow, gravely soils emerging from slate and sandstone prevail. Yields are very low, at about 25 hl/ha.
A stunning GG equivalent! Serious ripeness, but it somehow remains poised and precise with minty freshness that gives it a light feel. The flavors roll gracefully over the palate through to the very long, grapefruit-peel and mineral finish. From organically grown grapes with Fair’n Green certification. Drinkable now, but better in 2022. 97 points. Stuart Pigott, jamessuckling.com August 2020
2019 Georg Breuer Pfaffenwies Riesling RRP $160
The vineyard site Pfaffenwies was initially mentioned as ‘pafenwies’ in documents from 1211, and later as ‘pfaffenwissen’ (1235). It was named after Pastor Dydo, also known as ‘Pfaffe’.
This steep site has a gradient of up to 45% and is situated between 90 to 160m above sea level. The soil is a combination of stony Hunsrück slate and Taunus quartzite, with loess in the lower parts. Riesling from this area is characterised by great elegance as well as pronounced acidity and minerality.
2019 Georg Breuer Berg Schlossberg Riesling RRP $213
Georg Breuer has vines on 3.5 hectares of the Rüdesheimer Berg Schlossberg. With an gradient of 70%, this is the steepest vineyard in the Rheingau. Its name derives from the Ehrenfels castle ruins above the Rhine Gorge. Heat-absorbing weathered slate with loess and loam give ideal ripening conditions for Riesling which thrives on the high mineral content of the soil.
Farming is 100% organic (Georg Breuer is certified by Fair & Green). 100% healthy, ripe fruit, no maceration, whole cluster pressing, fermentation in old German wooden barrels (600-litre and 1,200 -litre), one racking after the fermentation and then a storage period on the fine lees for about seven months.
Ravishingly subtle nose with a slew of wild herbs and a cornucopia of golden autumnal fruit, this is super elegant and finely etched dry white with so much minerality through the very delicate finish, which stretches out towards the horizon. Another GG equivalent from this producer who pioneered the category. From organically grown grapes. Drink or hold. 98 points. Stuart Pigott, jamessuckling.com August 2020