The first thing to tell you is: the wines are stellar. That’s not a word I casually throw around. Schlossgut Diel belongs in the class of the elite. The wines will wow you. Armin occupies an unprecedented position in the wine world. He is proprietor of his estate on the Nahe, and he is perhaps the most influential wine writer in Germany. Imagine if Bob Parker owned one of the 1st-Growth Bordeaux: just like that. Needless to say neither Armin nor his colleagues writing for the same books or magazines review the wines of Schlossgut Diel, which is why the name doesn’t appear on the various lists of estate “classifications.” But of course there’s a meta-message: “The man is such an expert, imagine how good his own wines must be.” The ethics of the situation are quite sophisticated to American sensibilities, yet behind it all are the wines themselves. The rieslings hail most importantly from a trio of contiguous Grand Crus: Goldloch on thin loam and gravel over a rocky subsoil, Burgberg on quartzite, and Pittermännchen on Hunsrück slate. “The age of the vines are similar in the three sites, the microclimates are similar in the three sites, only a few meters separate them from one another, yet they are entirely different based on terroir,” say Armin and his cellar-master Christoph Friedrich.
Elite blue-chip estate on the lower Nahe, producing scintillating terroir-driven rieslings ranging from tingly slatey to baroque. Attentive viticulture and intelligent craftsmanship in the cellar make this one of Germany’s leading estates.