A. J. Adam, Riesling Kabinett, 2007

A. J. Adam, Riesling Kabinett, 2007

It may not be a polite subject, but there's no dancing around the issue: Deep-dyed mosel Rieslings from slate soils can give off a bit of an odour. You expect a bit of a mosel funk, you appreciate a bit of a mosel funk, yet in my humble mosel experience so far, here's the undisputed sultan of stink: Andreas Adams's Kabinett gives you your petrol spill, your car dealership, but throw in used motor oil, a sulphur spring and some rotten eggs, and you're getting closer. Very distinctive, if you like this kind of thing. And I certainly do. Beneath the stink, or maybe it's better to stay borne on the stink, are ripe apricots, deep stony minerality and a whiff of caramel. The fruit is really subdued at this stage of early maturity, the acidity is not much of a presence either, and it's really the hard-core slate minerality that is the blood and bones of this ultra-trad Kabinett.

Andreas Adam's Mosel winery is a tiny, tiny place, by the way, with just one hectare of vineyards, that he has actually taken over from his grandfather - and that makes perfect sense. While I could have done with a bit more acidity of fruit, this wine is wonderfully consistent, from the pretty old-style lable to the traditionalism of the wine style: Like a grandfather's old armchair or pocket watch, you get a sense of defiance and anti-modernism, but also of great comfort.

By the way, Mrs. Munich Wine Rambler, who is downright allergic to the petroly notes of older Rieslings ("What are we drinking tonight?", "Oh, this Riesling that I've wanted to try for months", "Hey, nice, but it's not one of these old stinkers, is it?", "Aahhm, it is actually on the ripe side, in a manner of speaking" "Oh no. What vintage is it?" "It's a tad older, to be perfecly honest..." "What vintage???", "1994" " Oh, for god's sake!"), liked this one, so you see, it's definitely a good kind of stinky.

Update: Twitter crowd wisdom corrects me
1. that Andreas Adam by now has three hectares of vineyards, and
2. that the stinky nose is due much more to spontaneous fermentation than slate soils.
Much appreciated.


Submitted by TheWinesleuth Thursday, 12/08/2010

Gutted that I missed my recent wine trip to Germany but will have to make an effort to get over there soon and try some of these gems!

Submitted by Julian Thursday, 12/08/2010

In reply to by TheWinesleuth

Yes, there's no two ways about it. But the good thing is, they seem to keep getting better every vintage, especially from those small producers. 2009 seems to be outstanding.