Papa Panda's Riesling
Jan’s farming on the steep slate hills of the area is strictly organic—a very hard commitment to make. It is far easier to spray pesticides from a helicopter, for instance, than to scramble up and down 60-70⁰ gradient slopes placing natural insect repellants on each and every vine. The hard work is an intrinsic part of the winery’s founding legend, however. Centuries ago, a donkey was originally the laborer of the steep slopes in Kröv until a wolf killed it. Legend has it that the monks caught the wolf and made it do the vineyard work after it killed the donkey. Wolf “Magnus” is still the mascot of the winery today (hence the labels and names).
It cannot be emphasized enough: these are not normal Mosel wines. They would be exceptional in ANY of the world’s winemaking regions, actually. Klein makes classic Rieslings under the Staffelter Hof label, but works with ZERO SULPHUR on this line of wines. They are unfined, unfiltered, hand-bottled, and contain varying levels of palate-tingling residual CO2. The variety of grapes is kaleidoscopic, featuring cuvees from Frühburgunder, Germany’s ruddy, blue/black-skinned “early Burgundy,” a.k.a. Pinot Noir Précoce, Sauvignon Blanc, Müller-Thurgau, Muscat, and a bewildering assortment of Portuguese grapes.
12% alc, 6.3g/l acid, 0.7g/l residual sugar, fermented in two Mosel füders (1,000L each) until August then put straight into bottle after malolactic fermentation ended. Left unfiltered and no SO2 added. One füder was from Enkircher Steffensberg and one from Kröv Letterlay vineyards.
This wine is part of Klein’s new Pandamonium range, for which he collaborates with very small producers to support them, in this case with a Polish winemaker in Klein’s home village of Kröv who grew the grapes for it. Klein and the grower each made one barrel and blended everything into one wine.