As always there is considerably more weight and intensity here than in the Kabinett level wines, though not necessarily more overt sweetness. Instead, it is a question of more power, more fruit, and therefore wines that can stand up to richer food.
Here again, we have excellent transparency and expression of place, alongside more savoury depth. 2018 is a superb Spätlese vintage. The wines have the same residual as a classic vintage, so what really stands out here is depth and complexity rather than obvious ripeness. The Bernkasteler is bright and juicy; the Graacher is already a blinder—floral, citrussy and mineral; while the Wehlener and the Zeltinger offer more deep and dense personalities—still filigree across the palate yet much more complexity and demanding more time to unwind.
“This has all of the elements of a great spätlese, with pronounced acidity supporting the ripe peach, yellow apple, mango and spruce flavors, while hints of vanilla and piecrust add to the complexity. Still a bit intense, but this should develop beautifully with age, allowing the minerality to become more prominent. Best from 2022 through 2038.” 93 points, Wine Spectator
“Subtle notes of yellow peach and pollen introduce this gorgeously sunny yet complex Spätlese. Flavors of tangerine and preserved quince drench the palate in waves of zesty sweet-tart fruit, but there's also a depth of smoke, slate and struck flint in the backdrop. Delightful already, this will continue to open and meld through 2035.” 94 points, Wine Enthusiast