Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Germany’s Best Ultra-premium Dry Riesling Wines - BerlinRieslingCup 2013, Germany

Picture: Brandenburger Tor in Berlin

Martin Zwick from Berlin is rapidly building up a reputation as being a mover and shaker in the German wine scene. This is due to the various Berlin Cups that he is organizing.

It all started with the BerlinRieslingCup a few years ago, a blind tasting and ranking in November of what Martin Zwick considered the leading Grosses Gewaechs wines - the ultra-premium dry wines of the VDP producers, Germany’s elite wine makers - that were released on September 1 of the same year. Initially, people did not pay much attention to the BerlinRieslingCup, but this has clearly changed over the years.

Picture: Martin Zwick, Christian G.E. Schiller and others at the 2013 VDP Pre-release tasting in Wiesbaden

In addition, the BerlinCup is no longer just about Grosses Gewaechs wines. Martin added a (1) BerlinGutsweinCup – ranking entry level wines, a (2) BerlinKabinettCup – ranking lightly sweet wines at the Kabinett level and recently for the first time a (3) BerlinSpaetburgunderCup – ranking German Pinot Noir wines.


The Berlin RieslingCup is a very special annual ranking of German wines, at least for 2 reasons. First, it includes only dry ultra-premium Rieslings, mainly Grosses Gewaechs wines. So, (1) the whole segment of red wines (accounting for about 1/3 of German wine production) is excluded (2) as is the segment of fruity sweet and noble sweet Rieslings (which are so popular in the German export markets) and (3) as is the non-Riesling white wine segment, which is being pushed by many in the German wine industry. Second, and what makes this ranking so interesting, it is a very early ranking, basically the first one after the release of the wines in September.

Pictures: Christian G.E. Schiller with Philipp Wittmann, Weingut Wittmann, and Tim Froehlich, Weingut Schaefer-Froehlich in Mainz and Wiesbaden

BerlinRieslingCup 2013

This year’s BerlinRieslingCup took place on November 3, 2013 und included 33 wines, down from 41 wines the year before. By definition, the 33 wines represented a subjective selection, but I think it probably included all ultra-premium Rieslings who could be the grand cru top wines of the 2013 vintage. 2 bottles came on the table. It is a blind tasting. The flights were selected by David Schildknecht.

Picture: Martin Zwick and Christian G.E. Schiller in Wiesbaden

Here are the results – the top 20 ultra-premium German Rieslings from the 2012 vintage:

1 Von Winning Kirchenstück GG 96
2 Emrich Schoenleber A. de. L. 96
3 Wittmann La Borne 95
4 Wittmann Brunnenhäuschen GG 94
5 Keller Morstein GG 94
6 Bürklin Wolf Kirchenstück GG 94
7 Sven Klundt Kastanienbusch 94
8 Wagner Stempel Höllberg GG 94
9 Battenfeld Spanier Frauenberg GG 94
10 Von Winning Ungeheuer GG 93
11 Bürklin Wolf Pechstein GG 93
12 Peter Lauer Schonfels GG 93
13 Keller Abtserde GG 93
14 Karl Loewen 1896 93
15 Kühling Gillot Rothenberg GG 93
16 Wechsler Kirchspiel 93
17 Wittmann Morstein GG 93
18 Emrich Schoenleber Halenberg GG 92
19 Van Volxem Pergentskopp GG 92
20 Schaefer Fröhlich Stromberg GG 92

Tasting Panel

The tasting panel changes every year. For this year’s tasting, it was composed of:

Wolf Albin (Riesling Lover, Berlin)
Matthias Dathan (Taster for Gault Millau , Berlin)
Christof Ellinghaus (Cordobar, Berlin)
Manfred Klimek (Captain Cork and Welt am Sonntag, Berlin)
Jürgen Klucken (Riesling Lover, Berlin)
Nikolai Laßmann (Riesling Lover, Berlin)
Michael Quentel (Taster for Weinwisser, Hamburg)
Gerhard Retter (Sommelier at and Owner of Fischerklause, Lütjensee)
Willi Schlögl (Sommelier Cordobar, Berlin)
Markus Vahlefeld (Medienproduzent, Köln)
Billy Wagner (Sommelier Rutz, Berlin)

schiller-wine: Related Postings (Berlin Cups) 

Germany’s Best Ultra-premium Dry Riesling Wines - BerlinRieslingCup 2013, Germany
Germany’s Ultra Premium Dry Riesling Wines – The Berlin Riesling Cup 2012
Germany’s Top Wines – The Berlin Riesling Cup 2011 Ranking

BerlinGutsrieslingCup 2013 – Rating Entry-level Rieslings from Germany
Berlin Gutsriesling Cup 2012, Germany 

BerlinKabinettCup 2013 - Kabinett 2012, Germany

BerlinSpaetburgunderCup 2011/2013, Germany

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