Jos. Christoffel Jr, Erdener Treppchen, Riesling Spätlese, 1996, White wine from Germany

7 points

Yes you can keep white wine for decades: Many Mosel Rieslinge can be stored for years. Many of them get better.

This wine is such a classic that many people would think: “oh god, this looks like stuff my grandparents would have in their pantry: sweet German white wine which gives you a headache.

The winemaker’s name is Karl Josef Christoffel. His family has been making wine forever. (

First of all, I must say that these “old” classic German Rieslings can be wonderful.  Too many of those have been supplanted by dry and even sour Rieslings, as sweetness in wine has become unpopular. But there is more than just sweetness in this case – but also with many others comparable wines from the middle part of German’s Riesling river # 1: Mosel.

Aside from the very traditional old-fashioned label, the appearance in the glass is a beautiful golden-yellow. The smell is an amazing mixture of such exotic fruits as mango and lime, but also gooseberry and perhaps ripe peach along with some herbal aromatic. There is an amazing finesse of acidity, gracefully build with a typical taste of petrol which you get only out of such great wine.

Imagine you’re eating a southeast Asian coconut milk soup with shrimp or some curry  you would usually consider drinking beer along with it. But if you combine such food with this wine you will experience an explosion of additional tastes, It is amazing how good these different items suit each other. I love this as of course no winemaker at the Mosel ever thought about making a wine which fits with Asian cuisine. It happens so many times that you get a recommendation to take some chardonnay with some asian food which you should never take. It doesn’t fit, it doesn’t complement. This Riesling and similar ones are top quality of winemaking, really affordable and from a global point of view absolute unique.