MCF Rare Wine
An Electrifying Pinot from Benedikt Baltes
This is a wine that I've been fascinated by for a while now, and have finally gotten around to writing up.
I first had this Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) at a casual lunch at Momofuku Saam Bar some four months ago. The tasting/lunch was hosted by my ol' pal Robin and her husband Kevin Pike, who owns Schatzi Wines, a wonderful import book of French, German, Austrian and Italian wines.
Anyway, in a lineup that included all kinds of great stuff, it was easily the most memorable thing there for me.
I'm gonna come right out and say that, due to the fact that it's a German Pinot at the $60 mark, I'm aware that it's one of those 'you just have to trust me' wines...
...and you just have to trust me.
We often hear people refer to something as a 'Wow Wine', and this Spatburgunder Klingenberg Alte Reben 'R' 2015 from Benedikt Baltes was, quite literally, a 'wow' wine.
After my first taste of it, I raised my eyebrows and actually mouthed 'Wow' to myself.
I saw Robin and Kevin, held up the bottle, and said it again...out loud...
It was bright, vigorous, supple, incredibly complex and suspended on a frame of acidity that was at once rigid and angular, but also incredibly light and agile.
It was like the carbon fiber racing chassis of wine structure...
...and the idea of 'raciness' is quite appropriate here.
Benedikt Baltes is a young (quiet young) star winemaker in the small Churfranken zone of Franconia, where the vineyards are planted almost entirely of red varieties. Here, on the steep, terraced slopes of red sandstone, the days are warm and sunny, the nights very cool.
In other words, they're ideal conditions for, not only 'racy' Pinot, but also incredibly complex Pinot, due to the hang time it affords the grapes.
This wine really has it all - the airy coolness (like the one I mentioned last week when discussing the Swiss Syrah), the bright, but incomparably-elegant red fruits, the racy energy and the floral/herbaceous/minty nuance.
Of course, the mineral-packed structure at the finish holds it all in place.
It's kinda like a wallet-sized print of some huge, incredibly ornate stained glass window - there's so much fine detail going on, but, on such a dainty scale, you really have to pay attention to catch it all.
Give it time in the cellar, though, and all of those nuances will not only increase in breadth, but also allow even more character to emerge.
I'm quite excited to see how this stunning wine develops.
It's one of the best German Pinots I've had in recent memory.
During the sit down lunch, there was an entirely different set of wines being poured, but I kept sneaking back for more of the Alte Reben to go with the Momo Duck.
Benedikt Baltes Spätburgunder Klingenberg Alte Reben 'R' 2015
To inquire about this wine, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212.255.8870.
MCF Rare Wine, Ltd
249 West 13th Street NYC 10011