Nikolaihof Riesling Vom Stein Federspiel 2020
- In stock, ready to ship
Direct Press Selection • January 2023
I could talk forever about Nikolaihof, one of the jewels of the Wachau wine trail and the world's first Biodynamic winery, certified in 1971. They also occupy the oldest building in Austria (470 AD). They make wines with power, age-worthiness, and gravitas, but they never feel like they're showing off. I've had the pleasure of visiting them twice, and their generosity and humility is infectious. If you ever get the chance, make sure you stay for dinner at their restaurant where many of the greens and herbs come from their own (Biodynamic, of course) gardens. Though Nikolaus Saahs has been making the wine for some time now, his mother Christine is the matriarch, and it was at her insistence that they began working their vines using Biodynamics. At the time, the estate was not well-known and it was also motivated to work without chemical treatments because they could barely afford them. Today is a different story, as they have become a leading face for legitimizing Biodynamic agriculture.
The Vom Stein Riesling comes from a single plot on gneiss and mica, overlaid with loess and a few feet of topsoil. Fleshy, soft pear fruit with grassy notes, spearmint, wet stones, and orange zest. Racy, dry, and mouth-watering, this is elegant and fabulously delicious with just a touch of cooling menthol and mineral texture on the finish. It's less reductive than some vintages, so it's a perfect wine to drink now, but I would highly recommend setting another bottle aside for 5-10 years. They often do library releases of this wine and they are always incredible. Jonathan Kemp