Wachau Riesling is dry and often defined by high levels of dry extract (due to a lengthy ripening period) and a pleasing freshness (due to dramatic temperature swings between day and night). Rudi Pichler’s Riesling Hochrain comes from vines up to 40 years old bringing density to this mineral-driven dry white wine.
Riesling’s high acidity makes it one of the most versatile wines at the table. Riesling can be used to cut the fattiness of foods such as pork or sausages and can tame a certain amount of saltiness. Conversely, it can highlight foods such as fish or vegetables in the same way a squeeze of lemon or a vinaigrette can.
Rudi Pichler is among the elite growers of the Wachau producing wines of precision, power, and longevity. Grüner Veltliner and Riesling make up 95% of the production with the remaining 5% shared between Weißburgunder and Roter Veltliner. Rudi Pichler belongs to the prestigious Vinea Wachau and vinifies under the strict parameters of their codex.
Yields are kept low between 30 and 35 hectoliters per hectare with botrytis carefully removed by hand. Grapes are crushed by foot and receive between three and 36 hours of maceration on the skins. Vinification is entirely in stainless-steel tanks and malolactic fermentation is avoided.
Hochrain, a name meaning "high place," is a southeast-facing terraced vineyard in Wösendorf sitting between 200 and 300 meters of elevation. The vineyard consists of an unusually high content of loess, a mineral-laden soil that produces wines that are especially broad and rich.
The 2021 Ried Hochrain Riesling Smaragd opens with bright fruit and vegetal as well as spicy-phenolic aromas on the bouquet. Juicy, zesty and fresh on the palate but still with little depth or soul, this is a rather fresh, zesty, spicy and astringent dry Riesling that needs a few years to prove itself. Tasted at Schloss Dürnstein, Wachau, in September 2022. Anticipated Maturity: 2027-2045