Alfred Graf Erdender Treppchen Spatlese, 2017

Style: Off-dry white       Vintage: 2017     

Varietal: Riesling      Appellation: Mosel

Region: Mosel     Country: Germany

The famous Erdener Treppchen Vineyard rests across the Mosel River from the small town of Erden, from which it takes the first part of its name. Treppchen means little staircase in German. Steep slopes are a common vineyard feature in the Mosel valley, as are stone steps and other engineering feats developed to make wine growing a little easier here. The Erden stairs were originally built in the Middle Ages, though the vineyard has been worked since at least the 3rd century. The south-facing slopes are steep enough to suck up all the sunlight they need, both directly and indirectly from the river below. This allows the grapes to ripen slowly and perfectly over the long German growing season. The red slate soil, intermingled with iron and compact clay underneath stony, gravelly top-soil, makes the wines distinctively full-bodied and strong. Grapes are individually hand picked and carefully pressed before being cold fermented with selected yeast in small stainless-steel tanks at controlled temperatures.