2018 Manni Nossing Muller Thurgau Sass Rigais
From a Shining Star in Alto Adige Comes This Game-Changing White Wine!
Vinous (Galloni) | 94 VM
Vinous Media | 94 VM
Wine Details for 2018 Manni Nossing Muller Thurgau Sass Rigais
|Type of Wine||Italy White|
: The world of wine is often considered a luxury industry, synonymous with success and lavish lifestyles. But, it can also be a cruel and unforgiving trade, not for the faint of heart. Cultivators of the Muller-Thurgau grape variety might fall into the latter category. With more than 10,000 wine grape varieties being cultivated around the world, it is understandable that a white grape such as Muller-Thurgau to go unnoticed, especially hailing from a winegrowing region known for its production of the world renowned and beloved Riesling wine grape.
Perhaps overlooked and disregarded are greater descriptions. Wine writers and critics rarely have good things to say about Muller-Thurgau, often blaming it for the decline of German wine quality. Over the past four decades, the variety has fallen out of favor and popularity; however it remains the 2nd most planted wine grape in Germany. In fact, Muller-Thurgau was Germany’s most planted grape and most exported wine from the 1940s up until the 1980s.
Despite the grape’s drop in popularity, blame-placing and inferior quality labeling, it should be praised and celebrated for helping to rebuild Germany’s wine industry after WWII. With the economy and infrastructure in tatters, post-war Germany needed an easy and productive vine to reinvigorate viticultural production. Muller-Thurgau was that variety. Though it led to four decades of cheap and sweet German wines, the impetus provided by Muller-Thurgau gave Germany the opportunity to rebuild its vinous reputation from the ground up.
Often referred to as Rivaner, due to early assumptions that it was the progeny of Riesling and the white Slivaner grape. This was, however, disproved by DNA testing, actually being a cross between Riesling and Madeleine Royale (which is considered a white table grape). Muller-Thurgau was created by Dr. Herman Muller (of Thurgau, Switzerland) in 1882, and this creation ended up helping to revive the crippled German wine industry.
The greenish-yellow berries grow in medium to large clusters of medium density and are described as having a slight Muscat flavor. The variety can be grown in a wide array of different soils and conditions, though it desires deep soil for its roots to really take up the terroir of the area and display this in the wine. Muller-Thurgau yields about 30% more than Riesling and ripens earlier, requiring less sun and making few demands of the climate (all positive attributes which enabled the grape and the resulting wine to thrive in a time of desperation). It does need more rain than Riesling as well as soil with good drainage.
The winegrowing regions of Germany offers a hospitable dwelling for Muller-Thurgau, providing a terroir comprised of loess, limestone, loam, sand and a mix of alluvial deposits. The grape seems to thrive in its adopted homeland with over 12,000 hectares covering its landscape. Quality-minded wineries producing varietal examples of Muller-Thurgau offer wines with the same complexity as fine Riesling, with primary flavors of peach, rose petal, lemon, lime and flint (greatly contributed by the sedimentary material).
Muller-Thurgau can also be found in Hungary (8,000 hectares) Austria (1,300 hectares) and Alto Adige, Italy, where the wines produced from the variety, are described as being lively with floral hints of lilac and geranium and tones of nutmeg, mineral-rich traits, citrus fruit and black currants on the palate. Dry versions are increasingly marketed under the synonym Rivaner. There are nearly 22,500 hectares of Muller-Thurgau cultivated world-wide. It continues to thrive, fly under the radar, but also continues to produce wines of unique quality. The variety deserves a closer look and a more reputable illustration of its qualities and attributes. A grape that saved a nation’s wine industry, discarded, but once again gracing the shelves of wine shops and dinner tables around the world.
: Italy is renowned as one of the world’s greatest gastronomic havens; from certified Prosciutto di Parma to the sea-side seafood eateries on the island of Sicily. However, this epicurean experience could not possibly be as hedonistic without the ethereal combination of the country’s plethora of fine wines. It seems unfair that a nation should be able to boast, both, some of the world’s greatest cuisine as well as its greatest wines. Italian wine is one of the most sought after in the world, and has become the second most produced in the world, behind only France.
Stretching an impressive 736 miles from northern Italy to the peninsula’s southern tip, the country’s geography generates an enormous array of topography, climate and soil structure. This is an extremely important quality of its winegrowing and making industry which lays claim to nearly 550 different grape varietals, which all desire their own necessities, in terms of terroir and climate.
The still red wines of Italy truly characterize the nation’s vast and expansive terroir; Nebbiolo dominates Piedmont, where Barolo and Barbaresco reign king and queen of the region’s production. Hailing from Brunello di Montalcino in Tuscany, the rockstar Sangiovese grape has become synonymous with greatness. Vin Santo sweet wines have taken on a mighty feat of competing with the glorious wines of Sauternes, and of course, Prosecco. Prosecco, located in Trieste (northeast Italy) and its creation of luxuriously effervescent styles of wine has become Italy’s answer to Champagne. The Glera grape variety, which has become synonymous with the name Prosecco, is the main ingredient and is beloved in the appellation where the village of Prosecco’s name has become world renowned.
The blurred boundary between Italy and the countries of Slovenia and Austria, where German influence still resonates through Friuli wines. The prevalence of Riesling and other such grape varietals is high in this region and have become extremely popular on today’s market.
With nearly 702,000 hectares of grapevines covering the massive and diverse landscape, Italy’s annual average of 48.3 million hectoliters of wine production is second only to France in terms of volume and Spain in terms of hectares of vines. The country is vast and overwhelming when it comes to the culinary arts, but perhaps even this is overshadowed by its production of some of the world’s most sought after wines, whether the omnipresent Chianti to the highly collectible and sought after Amarone della Valpolicalla.