MOSEL VALLEY - GERMANY
“Not many wine careers can have started off on a more superlative level than Haart’s, yet from my several conversations with him I am convinced that his perfectionism goes hand in hand with rigorous self-criticism that should preclude success going to his head.” - David Schildknecht, The Wine Advocate
Based in Piesport, in the heartland of the Mosel Valley, Julian Haart is the young star of German winemaking. His wine education could scarcely have been more illustrious, working with Heymann-Löwenstein for a year, Emrich-Schönleber for two and a half years, Egon Müller for a year, and Klaus Peter Keller for three years.
On his return to Piesport, he took over a small half-hectare plot in the Wintricher Ohligsberg, planted with century-old vines, followed by a hectare in the Piesporter Schubertslay, a unique plot with vines planted in 1904 on original rootstocks. Because it is so rocky, it escaped the Flurbereinigung of 1992, when vineyard holdings were rationalised, new roads built and an enormous amount of replanting was done.
The estate has grown to a little more than four hectares and this is, roughly, where Julian wants it to stay. Part of the joy of winemaking, for Julian, is doing everything himself, or with his wife Nadine, or with some friends. This is vineyard work, and winemaking, at the most human scale. Nearly everything must be done by hand – most of the vineyards are steep as hell and most of them are terraced. Even walking through them is a bit hazardous.
His goal is to make superlative dry wines, but they are brilliant and elegant across the entire range. He is striving for vineyard expression rather than just fruit; fermentation is allowed to start naturally, and the cellar temperature is kept at a steady 20ºC. Terroir shines through!
2019 Julian Haart 'Haart' Mosel Riesling (screwcap)
93 points - Stuart Pigott, JamesSuckling.com -“Prototypical Mosel. Lovely, nectarine nose, very succulent, but vibrant and refreshing with a rather dry finish that makes it super food-flexible. Analytically, this is medium-dry with 11.5% alcohol. Drink now.”
2019 Julian Haart Piesport Goldtropfchen Riesling Kabinett
95 points - Stuart Pigott, JamesSuckling.com -“Anything but a standard, playful little Kabinett! The licorice and tropical-flower character is married to very vibrant acidity and the merest hint of sweetness. Crystalline finish with great, lime-zest freshness. Drink or hold.”
2019 Julian Haart Wintrich Ohligsberg Riesling Kabinett 'Alte Reben' (white label)
98 points - Stuart Pigott, JamesSuckling.com -“Full of smoke and wild herbs, this is so succulent, but even more vibrant, with an unbelievably long and intense, crystalline finish for this "light" wine category. Drink or hold."
*highest rated Kabinett of the vintage*
2019 Julian Haart Wintrich Grosser Herrgott Riesling Spatlese
This is a brand new wine from the estate. Julian Haart: “We have been cultivating a parcel in the Wintricher Grosser Herrgott for four years. The quality was not ideal at first and we declassified the fruit into our JJ Kabinett. In 2019, the vineyard and the grapes looked ideal so we decided to produce a Herrgott Spatlese from it.”
2019 Julian Haart Wintrich Ohligsberg Riesling Spatlese
96 points - Stuart Pigott, JamesSuckling.com -“Let yourself be seduced by this wine that gives you a ton of freshly sliced stone fruit and freshly chopped basil, then balances succulence and racy acidity on a knife's edge through the long finish. Drink or hold."
2019 Julian Haart Rheinhessen Frauenberg Riesling (Grosse Lage - dry)
95 points - Stuart Pigott, JamesSuckling.com -“Funky and closed, this has quite some chalky power and a lot of lime freshness, giving it some serious drive at the long, focused finish. Better from 2021.”
2019 Julian Haart Piesporter Goldtropfchen Riesling (Grosse Lage - dry)
93 points - Mosel Fine Wines -“The 2019er Goldtröpfchen, as it is referred to on the red and silver consumer label, was pressed with an old basket press, and was fermented in stainless steel down to fully dry levels of residual sugar (3 g/l). It is slightly reduced at first and needs a couple of minutes in the glass to reveal an under-cooled and minty expression of Goldtröpfchen underpinned by some riper scents of yellow peach, a hint of apricot and camphor. The wine proves tight and zesty on the palate, but there is a great underlying structure and extract to balance the herbal and tart side in the finish. The aftertaste is bone-dry in taste and quite racy. This dry Riesling will require some patience in order for it to integrate all its elements, but the underling complexity is remarkable. 2024-2034”
2019 Julian Haart Wintrich Ohligsberg Riesling (Grosse Lage - dry)
94 points - Mosel Fine Wines -“The 2019er Ohligsberg, as it is referred to on the red and silver consumer label, was picked on from almost century-old vines and the grapes were pressed over 3 days with an old basket press. It was fermented in stainless steel down to bone-dry levels of residual sugar (4 g/l). It offers a captivating, complex, and flowery nose of grapefruit, grilled lemon, fresh pear, herbs, and quite a lot of spices. The wine is intense and packed with zesty fruits on the structured and compact palate. There is a lot of dry extract at play, which adds a feel of power and intensity to the experience. And yet this power is gorgeously balanced out by spicy and salty elements in the superbly engaging finish. This is an outstanding dry Riesling in the making. 2023-2034”
2017 Julian Haart Piesporter Goldtropfchen Riesling Spatlese
95 points, David Schildknect -"Grapefruit and Meyer lemon are laced with green tea, quarry dust and cress on a prominently pungent nose. The palate introduces succulent richness and generous juiciness of Persian melon to complement the tangy citrus and pungently herbal elements. At just 7% alcohol, it’s unsurprising that this comes off as extremely delicate, yet it also boasts subtly creamy textural allure. Incisive nips of cress, green tea and piquant citrus seed add to the invigoration of a mouth-shakingly exuberant as well as almost endlessly juicy finish transparent to underlying stone. Like its Ohligsberg counterpart, this was picked at 85 Oechsle, a must weight significantly lower than that which nowadays informs most top Mosel growers’ Kabinetts. Haart perceives this as an instance where his Spätlese represents an extension and intensification of the corresponding Kabinett."
2017 Julian Haart Piesporter Goldtropfchen Riesling Spatlese* (white label)
95 points, Mosel Fine Wines -"The 2017er Piesporter Goldtröpfchen Spätlese* is a special cask of Spätlese made from the same grapes as those used for the Estate’s top dry Goldtröpfchen, but with a hint of botrytis. Quite reductive at first and still marked by a touch of sulfur, this develops beautiful and gorgeous notes of candied mango, pineapple, whipped cream, honey, yellow peach and almond. The wine is delightfully elegant, creamy and delicate and shows intense complexity and depth on the palate. This will need quite some years but will then prove a beautiful, classic Spätlese. 2032-2047”
2017 Piesporter Goldtropfchen Riesling Auslese
97 points, James Suckling -“It's really hard to say if this could be more precise or brilliant. A wonderful fresh-cut pineapple character with salty minerality, which is very unusual for this category. Yes, it has some sweetness, but it makes you want to drink this with some Sichuan chicken! Drink or hold. Very limited production due to the frost damage.”