Schloss Lieser in New Zealand

At the end of March we were lucky enough to have Lara Haag, daughter of Thomas Haag of Schloss Lieser, Mosel with us in New Zealand for a few days to help host a series of fantastic Schloss Lieser Riesling events with Dhall & Nash in both Auckland and Wellington. Lara was able to tell her inspirational family story as well as present some of Schloss Lieser’s award winning wines:

 

Schloss Lieser Feinherb

2016 Schloss Lieser Riesling Feinherb

Slate-like fruit aroma. A juicy, piquant and salty Riesling.

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese

Rich, deep, complex mineral aroma. Complex, concentrated, and piquant on the palate.

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Spatlese

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Spatlese

Very fine, elegant mineral notes. Fresh and racy with a lots of grip.

 

Schloss Lieser Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

2016 Schloss Lieser Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

Very fine, clear and precise perfume. Ripe lemon flavours. Piquant and slate-like on the palate.

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Trocken GG

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Trocken GG

A masterly scent of peaches and classy exotic fruits. Great complexity with an infinite elegance.


While Lara was in New Zealand, she took part in various trade visits in Auckland and in Wellington where she was able to talk first hand about the Schloss Lieser wines, specifically from the 2016 vintage.

2016 was a year of extremes. It started off with a cool, long, damp spring with a lot of work keeping the fast growing canopy under control at Schloss Lieser. Flowering came late in mid-June, followed by an uneasy summer of both sun and rain. Finally by August everyone could breathe a little easier. Warm temperatures continued until Autumn, enabling the grapes to ripen perfectly. Harvest began on 10th October and for four weeks they were able to harvest extremely healthy, very ripe, golden yellow grapes. The result is a vintage of wonderfully fruity, high quality wines, with racy balanced acidity.

Xuxu Dumpling Bar

Lara Haag with Jahn Hansen, General Manager of Xuxu Dumpling Bar

Lara Haag at Sidart

Puneet Dhall & Lara Haag with Sophie Beaton from Sidart Restaurant


Auckland Dinner Event

A degustation was held at Culprit Restaurant in Auckland on Tuesday 27th March which included a range of impressive dishes and 4 of the Schloss Lieser Rieslings from the 2016 vintage. The evening began with a glass of the Feinherb and the Niederberg Helden Trocken GG. The Niederberg Helden Spatlese and Auslese were introduced later on in the night to accompany the various dishes.

The Schloss Lieser wines were paired with the following menu:

NZ Wakame & Market Fish, preserved lemon mayo, sesame, furikake wafer

Pork Cheek Nduja, Olafs Volkorn Toast, radish, cress, parsley, lemon oil

Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho, smoked mussel, cucumber

Chicken Liver Parfait, donuts, pinot noir syrup, char

Duck Fat Fried Brussel Sprouts, buttermilk ranch, old bay vinegar

Roast Bone Marrow, dill pickle gel, old edam toast, shallot & caper salad

On the Side

Culprit Roast Duck, hoisin sour cream, plum sauce, peanuts, iceberg

Cloudy Bay Tuatuas, chorizo XO sauce, fried vermicelli

Dessert

Steamed Ginger Kiss, vanilla mascarpone, stewed rhubarb, fairy floss


Wellington Dinner Event

A 5 course wine matched dinner was held at Noble Rot Wine Bar in Wellington on Wednesday 28th March with all of our Schloss Lieser Rieslings, including a special sweet Beerenauslese Riesling with dessert.

Schloss Lieser Noble Rot

Menu:

Crayfish Carpaccio, cucumber, celery, verjuice, seasoned roe
Paired with Schloss Lieser Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

Organic Chicken and Hock Roulade, confit carrots, pink grapefruit, dashi, brioche
Paired with Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Spatlese

Catch of the Day, hazelnut, cauliflower, broccolini
Paired with Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Trocken GG

Baked Endive, granola padano, cabernet vinegar, malt & walnut crumb
Paired with Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese

Dessert

Whittakers 50% Dark Ghana, soft chocolate, tomato raisin, thyme, feijoa
Paired with special Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Beerenauslese

Demeter Zoltán & The Tokaj Foundation

Demeter Zoltan TokajThe Hungarian wine industry has had a tumultuous history over the last century suffering from both natural and political disasters.  At the end of the 19th century, Hungary was ravaged by phylloxera, with many traditional varieties being replaced with French rather than local varieties.  The Trianon dictate, the global recession in the late 1920s, and then World War II meant life was tough with little time to focus on luxury and leisure.  Then came the Communist era. This was a period when the focus was very much on quantity rather than quality in most areas of production including the wine industry.  

For the majority of people in Tokaj, the era of creating outstanding and unique traditional wines seemed a distant or forgotten art and an era that belonged to their ancestors.  

However, for the last twenty years, wine professionals in Tokaj have worked extremely hard to resurrect these exquisite, traditional wines and to educate the world about their unique qualities. Among these professionals, Demeter Zoltán, founded in 1996 with the intent to take a full and active part in the recognition and rediscovery of Tokaj terroir and its wines. Supported by the Tokaj Foundation these creative winegrowers have used indigenous varieties to produce seductive wines which reflect both their terroir and tradition. They have succeeded in resurrecting a glorious taste of the past and injecting a warm glow of amber and gold back into the region.

Demeter Zoltan Vineyard

The Tokaj Foundation was established to encourage creativity in the region and rediscover the almost forgotten traditions.  This includes winemaking as well as other local customs. In December 2017 the Tokaj Foundation organised a huge concert in the local cathedral to celebrate their success and the riches of Tokaj.  

Tokaj Foundation Concert

Not only have they reconnected with their ancestors, but recreated local products and customs to pass on to future generations ensuring the history and local traditions of Tokaj will now live well into the future.


Check out our Demeter Zoltán Wines below:

 

Demeter Zoltan Veres Tokaji Furmint Wine

2015 Veres – Tokaji Furmint

This dry wine is scented with heady white flowers, green apple with a palate to match with the addition of lime

 

Demeter Zoltan Eszter Tokaji Cuvee Wine

2013 Eszter – Tokaji Cuvée (500ml)

Ripe stone fruit jump out of the glass. The wine is a beautifully crafted balance between fruit and vineyard. Honeyed and oily with a crisp acidity playing yin to the fruit weights yang

 

Demeter Zoltan Tokaji Aszu Hold-volgy Wine

2007 Tokaji Aszú Hold-völgy (500ml)

Complex spice and savoury notes from Botrytis rich fruit at harvest. Well integrated and balanced

 

 

Demeter Zoltan Narancsbor Orange Wine

2015 Narancsbor Orange Wine

Grippy phenolics across the palate, sandalwood, pohutakawa honey and sweet fenugreek notes develop.  This wine is complex and needs air to open up its tight core of flavors.  The finish is dry and stony with an oily viscous texture

Weingut Schloss Lieser – Producer of Some of the World’s Finest Riesling

 

Pure and bright – seductive and sensual. The many guises of Riesling are what makes it such an alluring and highly revered varietal. Schloss Lieser is a master at showcasing the diversity of this amazing varietal and their wines are sought after around the world.

Situated in the picturesque Mosel Valley, the castle was built in 1875 with the winery added in 1904. Schloss Lieser was, however, in a very run down state when Thomas Haag took it over in the 1990s. Yet through hard work and his huge passion for Riesling, Haag has turned Schloss Lieser into one of the top Riesling producers in the world and restored the estate to its former glory. Thomas comes from a highly regarded dynasty of Mosel winemakers. His grandfather established the well-known Fritz Haag wine estate and decided to focus solely on producing premium Rieslings. Wilhelm Haag, Thomas’ father, succeeded Fritz, and became Winemaker of the Year in 1994, again showing their dedication to this varietal. Thomas and his family also focus solely on Riesling, producing all styles from dry to sweet, including four Grosses Gewächs. A passion for Riesling is definitely in the Haag blood.

Schloss Lieser Estate

The Schloss Lieser castle built in 1875

The vineyards are planted along the River Mosel on south or south-west facing sites on the very steep, slate slopes. These are premium spots as warmth from the sunshine, radiation from the heat absorbing slate soils and solar reflection from the river help the grapes fully ripen in this northern, cool climate region. The warm summers with cool nights and the long autumns enable the grapes to ripen slowly, thus developing optimum flavours and a wonderful racy acidity.

All work is carried out by hand on these steep slopes. Traditionally in the Mosel, each vine is attached to an individual stake as this enables the workers to work horizontally instead of vertically. Haag, however, has broken tradition and recently introduced wire training for some of their vines. He believes this allows them to be worked more easily and keeps yields low.
Several passes are made during vintage to pick the ripest grapes for the various styles, again adding to the intensity of the workload.

Schloss Lieser River

Vines of Schloss Lieser overlooking the Moselle River

Haag’s philosophy is “as little as possible, as much as necessary” as he aims to pursue a very natural cultivation of the vineyards which he believes maintains his responsibility to the environment.

The Schloss Lieser Rieslings therefore not only reflect the incredible Mosel terroir but also the passion and dedication of the Haag family.


Check out the Schloss Lieser Rieslings below:

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Auslese

Pale gold. Rich, deep, complex mineral aroma. Complex, concentrated, and piquant on the palate.

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Spatlese

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Spatlese

Pale gold. Very fine, elegant mineral notes. Elegant, fresh, and racy with a lots of grip.

 

Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Trocken GG

2016 Schloss Lieser Niederberg Helden Riesling Trocken GG

Pale gold. A masterly scent of peaches and classy exotic fruits. Great complexity with an infinite elegance.

 

Schloss Lieser Feinherb

2016 Schloss Lieser Riesling Feinherb

Pale gold. Slate-like fruit aroma. A juicy, piquant and salty Riesling.

 

Schloss Lieser Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

2016 Schloss Lieser Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Kabinett

Pale gold. Very fine, clear and precise perfume. Ripe lemon flavours. Piquant and slate-like on the palate.

Contact us