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.
“Well-structured and harmonious, with a silky mouthfeel, this is very charming, yet powerful and expressive, revealing saffron and jasmine aromas. The palate features tropical fruit flavors of guava and passion fruit, followed by sweet Asian spice notes. Star anise and apricot marmalade hints extend on the finish. Best from 2022 through 2036.” 93 points, Wine Spectator
“For a bottling that usually requires years to show its colors, this surprisingly open, lavishly perfumed Spätlese wafts of pristine white peach and blossom. It's delightfully honeyed yet invigorating, balancing layers of apricot and yellow cherry flavors against crushed slate and dazzling acidity. While tempting in youth, it should improve through 2035.” 94 points, Wine Enthusiast