This highlight from the 2018 Bernkasteler Ring Auction underlines the incredible strides in quality done by this still completely under-rated Estate in the Terrassenmosel.
The 2018 Auction held by the Bernkasteler Ring broke some records for young wines. The perfect dry 2016er Bernkasteler Doctor Auslese *** by Markus Molitor became the most expensive dry Riesling from the regular bottle: It was sold at €1,000 (before fees, VAT and duties).
Clearly, the perfection of this wine enticed buyers to open wide their wallets. However, as so often at the Bernkasteler Ring, other great wines auctioned off that day proved less pricey and offered fine value. This includes the superb 2016er Bremmer Calmont Fachkaul GG by the completely under-rated Weingut Reinhold Franzen
Weingut Reinhold Franzen is a family Estate situated in Bremm, in what is often referred to as the Terrassenmosel.
Young Kilian Franzen had to take over the family Estate at a very young age, after his father tragically died in a vineyard accident in 2010. Together with his then girlfriend and now wife Angelina, they completely transformed the style of the Estate to one of classic elegant finesse.
Far from being bold and big (as Terrassenmosel dry Riesling unfortunately often are), the Estate takes extra care to keep alcohol under control and to produce beautifully balanced and refined dry Riesling. Its wines undergo some pre-fermentation cold soak and also do a partial malolactic fermentation (which occurs in parallel to the alcoholic fermentation with ambient yeasts).
Already in 2015, we drew the attention of our readers to the Estate’s outstanding 2013er Bremmer Calmont GK GG, one of the finest dry Riesling in this rather challenging vintage. Since then, the Estate has further refined its style to the point that its recent dry and dry-tasting Riesling are among the finest of the Mosel. To add to this great news, even its basic wines are stunning.
You got the message: This is one of the stars of the Mosel ... only that its pricing policy and fame have not yet matched up with its stardom.
In the 2000s, Reinhold Franzen painstakingly acquired over 112 separate parcels of vineyards in the Bremmer Calmont. These were situated in the super-steep, full south-facing sector known as Fachkaul. As a result, the Estate was able to consolidate a 1.5 ha vineyard and had a monorail installed to work these vineyards. This sector was classified in the highest tax categories by the Prussian authorities.
With the 2016 vintage, his son Kilian introduced a separate “GG” from the steep holdings in the Fachkaul (Grosses Gewächs: also the members of the Bernkasteler Ring produce some GGs). The wine as harvested in mid-October at 90° Oechsle and was fermented with ambient yeasts in stainless steel before being bottle after 12 months on its fine lees.
Simply put, this dry Riesling is a huge success. The wine has the full glorious spice of the iron-rich Bremmer Calmont but delivers this with utter finesse and elegance. The acidity is beautifully well integrated and the finish airy and persistent.
If you missed the occasion for buying this glorious wine at the 2018 Auction, you may want to turn your head to the gorgeous Riesling collection which the Estate has dished up in 2017. These wines are among the finest dry and dry-tasting Riesling you can buy in the Mosel ... and beyond the Mosel.
The superb collection of 2017er Riesling wines by Reinhold Franzen
were reviewed in the Mosel Fine Wines Issue No 42 (Aug 2018).
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Bremmer Calmont Fachkaul (Auction)
The 2016er Bremmer Calmont Fachkaul GG offers a beautiful nose of mirabelle, white peach, pear, while flowers, herbs and spices. The wine is beautifully playful and elegant on the palate and leaves a still slightly tart feel in the vibrant finish. This is a gorgeous wine in the making with even some upside potential if it further gains in complexity with aging. 2021-2036
© Text by Mosel Fine Wines "The Independent Review of Mosel Riesling ... and beyond!"
Disclaimer: Mosel Fine Wines is an independent publication and has no commercial relationship with any Estate, association or organization featured in this article.