J. J. Prüm: Complex, satisfying & amazingly long lived
For many people the wines of estate Joh Jos Prüm are the touch paper that ignites a lifelong love for the wines of the Mosel. They epitomise so much that is great about Riesling from the Mosel; an unparalleled marriage of lightness of touch, complexity, finesse and purity. Put simply, they dance. They are one of Germany’s most respected wine estates and their wines are not only fantastically complex and satisfying but also amazingly long lived.
While they have vineyards in Bernkastel and Zeltingen the estate is most famous for the fruity wines it makes from their south facing vineyards in the Sonnenuhr of Wehlen and the Himmelreich of Graach. The former produces more deeply flavoured wines that are supremely noble, refined and often take a little longer to reveal themselves, while the latter produces slightly more energetic, earlier maturing wines with refreshing acidities and a characteristic spicy mineral quality. They are bottled later than most Mosel wines and reward extended cellaring. The estate is currently run by Manfred Prüm's extremely passionate and well informed daughter, Katharina, who was there to show us through the wines and guide us through their perilously steep vineyards when we recently visited the estate. Sadly we weren’t able to visit the cellars as Manfred is notoriously secretive about them, which only adds to the mystique behind one of the most legendary wine estates in Germany.
They offer a wide range of wines that, depending on the vintage, run from Kabinett, to Spatlese, Auslese (with some Auslese Goldkapsel and Langhe Golkapsel) all the way through to tiny quantities of Beerenauslese and Trockenbeerenauslese wines that are very rare, very expensive and very, very good. They are not afraid to not make a wine if mother nature doesn’t provide the correct conditions. Mature vintages of their wines are hard to source with many of the great vintages finding their way into collectors’ cellars, never to see the open market again. If you want to ensure that you are able to drink these great vintages when they are mature, you really do need to buy them now.