Markus Schneider, Pfalz, Germany
ca 13 € (mundus vini)
Very dark purple-red color, intensive. Nose: Herbal (thyme, salvia), spicy, dark fruit, alcohol. Palate: dark cherries, plums, chocolate, herbal (pronounced). Medium-full bodied, more so in the front of the mouth, getting thinner towards the end. Nice, friendly tannins. Finish is quite long, dominated of green (herbal/green bell pepper) notes. Warming. 14% abv. 40% St. Laurent, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 13% Syrah.
The grapes were harvested by hand and marcerated in open wood vat. Fermentation in 10 weeks. Maturation in oak barrel until July 2008.This wine is very intensive and defintely shows its own (stubborn) character. I have read people writing about it being a 'big wine'. Without wanting to sound negative, I personally cannot agree with that. To me, the 'green' side of the wine dominates too much and the alcohol is too strong. But, a wine drinker that loves the more greanier side of life, will appreciate this one very much. No doubt. Had I tested it blindly, I believe, I might have guessed South Africa. I did let my husband try without letting him know what it was. His spontanous remark was: 'rather raw, unworked, definitely not a French elegantly-worked-on-wine (as he calls the Bordeaux :-)), but not Spanish, not Italian either.' But: he could not say that it was German! Ha! Good example of a red wine from Germany that does surprise people with its intensity.
Markus Schneider is very successfull, selling his wines before harvest (what a dream?). He has gotten a lot of attention from the 'big guys' and we all will surely hear a lot more of him. I love the new, creative and modern style he has chosen and I am impressed by how consequently odd he presented himself and his wines for the public. A good example to show that a lot is happening in the Pfalz. I will want to go by and try his Rieslings and Sauvignon Blancs as soon as I get a chance. Please, go to his homepage, it gives a nice impression of the winery, the land and the personality :-).