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July 22, 2008

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Lenn asked me to clarify my misgivings about dry 2007 rieslings. Basically, most of them are generally good, but they leave something to be desired in terms of an entire experience. The nose is strong and ripe, but the initial sip leaves one with the taste of jumbled fruit with very little minerality or acidity. The weak backbone is apparent on almost all, but is outright missing on some.

The finish can bring some depth back into the wine, yet many samples have the same overripe, muddled taste from beginning to end.

Winemakers admit that the hot, dry weather of 2007 made for some difficult riesling conditions. At the very least, acidity was compromised.

Of course, some 2007's I've tasted jump from the pack with adequate acidity or perhaps some balance of flavors that otherwise impress (the Argetsinger riesling from Ravines is a good example, as Lenn just highlighted). Note the other examples above.

The sweetness of the semi-dry rieslings seem to jive with the level of minerality and acidity present in the grapes, resulting in a product that is simply more enjoyable right now. I think that some of the dry 2007's will develop and settle into something very good indeed, but others may fade quickly in the bottle.

Many 2006's are rieslings that will be around for years. Some 2007s may not be up for such longevity, but many will please right now when opened. The right type of fruit really leaves an impression and I would recommend trying a variety over the next year when they are still full flavored.

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