After ‘Das Kreuz’, here is the ‘lesser’ of the Bordeaux blends that the Rings brothers produce from the ‘Das Schwarze Kreuz’ vineyard situated to the south of Freinsheim. Incidentally, Andreas and Steffen Rings have now relocated their winemaking operations from a backstreet near the village railway station to a spanking new site in the middle of this vineyard.
Andreas and Steffen Rings, Das Kleine Kreuz 2009, Pfalz
This is mix of Cabernet Sauvignon, St. Laurent, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Dark, almost opaque red. Densely packed aromas. The finest dark chocolate imaginable combines with currants to evoke something slightly akin to Cadbury’s Fruit and Nut. There is also has a slight Amarone/Rumtopf characteristic. I remember this wine’s initial dark fruit of youth. This has developed into something even more voluptuous. Hints of iron lend an interesting counterpoint. Velvety smooth on the palate with mellow tannins. Full-bodied concentration with dark and dried berry fruit. The 2009 season was warm, and this wine is a blockbuster with 14.5% abv. Certainly not a bottle to drink on your own in one sitting. Nevertheless, there is enough freshness to lift the opulence and density onto a higher, extremely delicious, multilayered plane. I would say that this red is at the perfect stage right now. The finish is long – with serious structure framing the wine’s silky smoothness.