Markus Spindler

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So it is not surprising that some would have us stay where we are a little longer to rest, to wait. But this country was not built by those waited and rested and wished to look behind them.” Ted Sorensen

In so far as history sets expectations, most growers are more than happy to be work within those expectations, if not comfortably carried along by them. For a young grower, whose family name is carved into the stone marker atop the hedge one of Germany’s finest vineyards, the pull to stay within the patterns of the past would be strong.

The Forster Kirchenstück vineyard.

However, in the pastoral Palatinate village of Forst, Markus Spindler is proving, in ways both subtle and bold, that new challenges can be undertaken; new traditions can be started.

Markus' polyculture

2015 was Markus’ first year of certified organic farming, but he and his father have been guiding their parcels in some of Germany’s most historical and highly rated vineyards towards the goal of healthy soils for several years.

We begin in the west along the forest's edge. Cooled by the air flowing down from the Palatinate Forest-Vosges Mountains, the Musenhang vineyard with its limestone and weathered sandstone soils is one of Spindler’s later-ripening parcels, yielding Rieslings with subtle aromatics and nervy minerality. To the east Musenhang, Markus also works vineyards in the Grosse Lage (Grand Cru) sites of Ungeheuer and Pechstein.

Limestone and sandstone soils of Ungeheuer

Ungeheuer Rieslings tend to show riper, more fruit-forward aromatics, while Pechstein Rieslings play at a higher, more delicate register of fine floral notes and pitch-perfect minerality.

Basalt-laden sandy-loam soils of Pechstein

Finally, intrepid dedication meets world class vineyards in Markus’ two top parcels in Jesuitengarten and Kirchenstück (shown below).

Kirchenstück

The Jesuitengarten, once the holding of the local Jesuit monastery, offers soils of pure basalt and sandstone. Stylistically, this is a classic expression of Pfalz Riesling’s tropical fruit aromas, but made distinctive by beguiling smoky and herbal touches.

The Kirchenstück has long been considered one Germany’s best vineyards and Markus’ Riesling does not disappoint. The soils are a sequence of limestone, sandy-loam, and basalt. Markus was brave enough to choose native-yeast fermentations in steel tanks for this wine, with a view of offering an unvarnished look into the terroir of this 3.67ha site. Spindler’s Kirchenstück shines with aromatic purity and range, matched with a powerful, yet filigreed minerality.

Dry Rieslings are rarely this aromatically expressive and detailed. We are proud to offer a full range from this very promising, Palatinate grower, Markus Spindler.

The Spindlers

- David Salinas

*****Please join us this Saturday, 2/6, from 4-7pm for a tasting of Markus Spindler's dry Rieslings. Also, on Thursday, 2/18, Josi Leitz will be with us from 5-7pm for a special tasting of his new releases!

 

Spindler, Heinrich 2014 Pfalz Pechstein Riesling Trocken

Beneath a layer of sandy-loam, Pechstein's soils hold basalt or pitched stone, the source of this vineyard's name. Along with the Jesuitengarten this wine was one of the clear stand-outs of Markus' 2014 campaign. It shines a golden honey yellow in the glass and welcomes with aromas of lilacs, chrysanthemums, grilled pistachios, lavender, and cranberries. The palate shows a fine minerality, offering tremendous length with notes of white truffles prior to a linden blossom finish. This is nuanced and impeccably detailed, dry Riesling!

- David Salinas

  • white
  • 1 in stock
  • $41.99

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Spindler, Heinrich 2014 Pfalz Forst Riesling Trocken

Few Rieslings on our shelves are as versatile as Spindler's village-level Forster Trocken. Unquestionably this is due to a blend that contains fruit from the south-facing, sandy loam of the Forster Elster vineyard. In addition, the Forster has top-tier fruit from the basalt, sandstone, and limestone soils of the Pechstein, Ungeheuer, Jesuitengarten, and Kirchenstück vineyards. The Forster stands a pale, straw yellow in the glass, rendered vibrant by aromas of tarragon, thyme, nutmeg, and orange blossom. The palate is downright zippy with tones of Doyenne pears, quince, and fresh ginger, before a mellow, slightly spicy finish. A fine, dry Riesling for the table.

- David Salinas

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $23.99

Spindler, Heinrich 2014 Pfalz Forster Musenhang Riesling Trocken

The Forster Musenhang is an Erste Lage (Premier Cru) site, situated high on the slope to the Haardt Mountains, and its soils are laden with limestone and weathered sandstone. This is one of Markus' cooler sites, where he organically farms a 0.6 hectare parcel. Aromatically, Musenhang (the slope of musing) floats on a spectrum of floral and spice tones, including lime blossom, vanilla bean, and nutmeg. The palate is fairly weighted, but stays nimble with interlacing ribbons of minerality, that carries notes of black truffle oil and lemon zest through to a finely dry finish. Serious Riesling, but remains accessible to all.

- David Salinas

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $27.99

Spindler, Heinrich 2014 Pfalz Forst Jesuitengarten Riesling Trocken

Markus farms a 0.2 hectare sliver of this historically highly-regarded Grosse Lage site, known for its pure basalt and limestone soils. His 2014 Jesuitengarten stands as a classic example of Pfalz Riesling, but balanced by distinct aromatic flourishes to have appeal beyond its pedigree.  Resplendent golden yellow hues give way to aromas of starfruit, star anise, Bananas Foster, fresh spearmint, and smoky notes. A broad and powerful palate shows a lovely minerality that rises to a mouth-watering finish. Dry Pfalz Riesling at its most refined and emotionally stirring!- David Salinas

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $49.99

Spindler, Heinrich 2014 Pfalz Forst Kirchenstück Riesling Trocken

Long considered the finest vineyard in the Pfalz, the sandy-loam, basalt, and limestone soils of the Kirchenstück are known for yielding Rieslings with tremendous verve and tension. Markus' Kirchenstück is no exception with aromas of orange blossom, pine, hazelnuts, lime zest, and petrol tones. Yet, the palate retains a light touch with a lively minerality and aromas of apricots, spiced peaches, and thyme leading to a finely dry finish. A Riesling worthy of the vineyard and the grower.- David Salinas

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $52.99