This wine comes from the prize south-facing ‘Im Großen Garten’ plot of the Burgweg grand cru, overlooking the Eckbach stream that originates in the Palatinate Forest (Pfälzer Wald). By all accounts, Knipser tweaked the style of their Pinots from 2008, focusing increasingly on elegance and finesse at the expense of alcohol levels. With its substantial 14% abv, this Pinot Noir comes across at first sight as a relic from yesteryear.
Knipser, Burgweg GG, Spätburgunder trocken, 2007, Pfalz
A healthly ruby colour with only slightly light-brown hints round the edges. A dense yet expressive kaleidoscope of aromas – from iron notes and blood orange, to forest fruits (blackberry and raspberry), hints of bacon and a chalky minerality. A medium (+) body probably reflects as much the vintage as the Knipsers’ previous approach to making Pinot, if truth be told. However, the masculine, powerhouse character of the wine has uncoiled somewhat over the years – and pleasingly so – to leave tannins that melt in the mouth, as well as tertiary notes of leather and bacon, a certain chalkiness and the same aforementioned berry fruit expression. Also worth noting is that the oakiness of around five years ago has dissipated completely. The finish has vital acidity and is highly structured and long-lasting. At 11 years and counting, this wine is now reaching adulthood and is more than worthy of its GG status. Easily in ‘ninety-something’ territory, were I a critic.