Weingut Leitz, Rheingau Pinot Noir Rosé
Weingut Leitz, Rheingau Pinot Noir Rosé

Weingut Leitz, Rheingau Pinot Noir Rosé

Rheingau, Germany 2021 (750mL)
Regular price$29.00
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Weingut Leitz, Rheingau Pinot Noir Rosé

Riesling is Germany’s (and Weingut Leitz’s) calling card, so it’s easy to forget that Germany is also the world’s third-largest Pinot Noir producer. The southerly Baden has a long history with the “Pinot” family (its vineyards were planted by the same Cistercian Monks who established Pinot Noir in Burgundy), and there are equally stunning Pinots to be found in other German growing zones, including Rheinhessen, Pfalz, and Leitz’s home base in the Rheingau. In a warming climate, cooler areas like the Rheingau are now becoming prime Pinot Noir territory—delivering a level of freshness that is especially welcome when the grape is vinified in rosé form.

Since taking over his family’s property in the mid-1980s, Johannes Leitz has grown the vineyard holdings and the notoriety of this estate exponentially. Most of the estate’s 40 hectares of vines (up from just 2.6 in 1985) are arrayed on the famed Rüdesheimer Berg, a steep hillside that is home to some of the most revered “grand cru” Riesling vineyards in Germany. Leitz was named the 2011 “Winemaker of the Year” by the prestigious Gault-Millau wine guide.

The Rheingau growing zone is a relatively small one, covering a roughly 20-mile stretch of the Rhine River, which takes an abrupt westward turn near the town of Mainz. Weingut Leitz is headquartered at the western end of the Rheingau appellation, in Rüdesheim, where soils are dominated by slate and quartz; the Pinot Noir for this wine hails from the nearby village of Johannisberg, where quartz is mixed with loam and loess (wind-blown silt).

This is a “direct-to-press” style of rosé, meaning that the grapes are de-stemmed, allowed to macerate with their skins for about three hours, then pressed into stainless steel tanks to undergo fermentation. A long, cold fermentation produces a wine of low alcohol and crisp, citrusy acidity. Bright copper-pink in the glass, it sends up perfumed aromas of cranberry, blood orange peel, wild strawberry, pekoe tea, pink grapefruit, pink peppercorn, dried flowers, and wild herbs. It is tangy and quite savory, perfect for serving as a food-friendly apéritif. Pull the cork and pour into all-purpose stems at 45 degrees, safe in the knowledge that just about anything you choose to serve with it is going to work—prosciutto with melon, salmon croquettes, bruschetta, you name it!

Weingut Leitz, Rheingau Pinot Noir Rosé


Western Germany


The Pfalz is Germany’s second-largest wine region (behind Rheinhessen, which it borders to the south). The vineyards are situated between the thickly forested Haardt Mountains and the western bank of the Rhine River, with soils that are rich in loam mixed with sandstone, loess (wind-blown silt), and chalky clay.

Western Germany


he Rheinhessen is Germany’s largest-production wine zone and, in comparison to some of the dramatic valleys further north, is a more open landscape of gently rolling hills.

Western Germany


The Saar River is a tributary of the Mosel (and in-cluded in the broader “Mosel-Saar-Ruwer”) PDO designation with vineyards perched on steep slopes of blue Devonian slate. The rocky soils and cool temperatures of these northerly valleys produce Germany’s most chiseled, high-acid  styles of Riesling.

Southwestern Germany


Baden, Germany’s southernmost wine region, has a long history with the “Pinot” family. The region’s vineyards were planted by the same Cistercian Monks who established Pinot Noir in Burgundy. Bordered by the Rhine River and the Black Forest, Baden has diverse soils—everything from loess (silt) to volcanic tuff to limestone, the most prized Pinot Noir soil of all.

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