Peter Lauer

Country of Origin: Germany
Location: Ayl, Saar, Mosel
People: Peter Lauer with sons Florian & Peter, Owners & Winemakers
Viticulture: Practicing Organic


Peter Lauer NV Riesling Sekt, Saar Login In Stock
Peter Lauer 2016 'Barrel X' Riesling (Off-Dry), Saar Login MFW 87 In Stock
Peter Lauer 2015 'Senior' Fass 6 Ayler Riesling, Saar Login MFW 89+ AG 91 In Stock
Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 15 Stirn Riesling, Saar Login AG 92 In Stock
Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 17 Neuenberg Riesling, Saar Login AG 90 In Stock
Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 25 Ayler Riesling (Dry), Saar Login MFW 87 AG 89 In Stock
Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 9 Kern Riesling, Saar Login AG 92 In Stock

Media Links
Punch: Meet the Who's Who of Wine Cool
I'll Drink to That!: Episode 174: Florian Lauer
SF Gate: New German Rieslings Somewhere Between Dry and Sweet
Mosel Fine Wines: 2014er Peter Lauer Ayler Schonfels Riesling Fass 11 GG
Terroirist: Tasting Peter Lauer's Riesling Barrel X

For purists, there is nothing like the Saar. Saar shows intensity without weight, grandiosity without size: rocks and acidity. Frank Schoonmaker put it best in his 1956 tome The Wines of Germany: “In these great and exceedingly rare wines of the Saar, there is a combination of qualities which I can perhaps best describe as indescribable – austerity coupled with delicacy and extreme finesse, an incomparable bouquet, a clean, very attractive hardness tempered by a wealth of fruit and flavor which is overwhelming.” Yes, this is the Saar. Peter Lauer, founded in 1830, is currently one of greatest estates in this sacred place.

Lauer brothers Florian and Peter III currently run the Peter Lauer estate. Florian Lauer completed oenological studies at the École Nationale in Montpellier, France in 2005. Florian has moved his family’s winery away from the style of their famous neighbors Egon Müller and Zilliken. The estate focuses on dry and dry-tasting Riesling as opposed to the residual sugar (Kabinett, Spätlese, Auslese) wines of the latter two. Yet the hallmarks are similar: purity, precision, rigor, mineral.

The Lauer family estate is located in Ayl. Ayl is a small village on the west side of the Saar River. The estate is planted exclusively to Riesling; some parcels are around a century old. The great majority of wines are sourced from the famed Ayler Kupp. Ayler Kupp is a single mountain that has an intricate tapestry of parcels and sub-parcels. Florian uses the pre-1971 vineyard names to designate and highlight these parcels. Florian wants to give each terroir the chance to express its personality. Kern, Stirn, Neuenbersch, and Unterstenbersch are all sub-parcels of the famous Kupp. Schonfels and Saarfeilser, though classified as part of the Ayler Kupp by current German wine law, are distinct and separate sites. To Florian’s credit, he treats them as such. Florian also uses cask numbers known as “fass” to designate his wines. The fass numbers are primarily based on the parcels that historically went into specific wines. For example, ‘Fass 6 – Senior’ is based on a selection that Florian’s grandfather (Peter I) made every year. As the patriarch of the family, he would taste through the vintage and select one barrel for his personal consumption. On this barrel, he would write ‘Senior.’ According to Florian, 8-9 times out of 10, his grandfather would pick fass 6 (cask 6), which held wine sourced from the western-most region of the Kupp. Thus, today, the wine from this particular parcel is called ‘Fass 6 – Senior.’

Florian is a minimalist in their cellar. The only interventions are temperature control, a clarification prior to fermentation and battonage (stirring of the lees). The grapes ferment spontaneously with native yeast. Lees contact is allowed as well as some partial malolactic fermentation. As he describes it, "I don't look for malo but I don't avoid try to avoid it. It just happens in parallel." This approach takes the edge out of the acidity, and if done with care, doesn’t add simplifying lactic notes. The end results are undeniable: depth, texture, dimension, and clarity.

In 2013, the winery became a member of Verband deutscher Prädikatsweingüter (VdP), which is an organization where most (but not all) of Germany's top wine producers are members.


  • Peter Lauer 2015 'Senior' Fass 6 Ayler Riesling, Saar
    Mosel Fine Wines
    Rating: 89+ (6/1/2016)

    This offers bright and delicately flowery scents of ginger, candied grapefruit peel, Provence herbs and slate. The wine is mineral and delicately fruity on the palate and leaves a clean and linear feel in the still slightly hard finish. Drink 2017-2025.
  • Peter Lauer 2015 'Senior' Fass 6 Ayler Riesling, Saar
    Rating: 91 (5/1/2017)

    Sourced from old vines at the western end of the Ayler Kupp, the “Senior” comes closer in 2015 than in other recent vintages to this bottling’s original inspiration, namely the sort of decidedly dry-tasting Riesling that appealed to the generation of Florian Lauer’s grandfather. Despite only narrowly breaching the 10-gram limit of legal Trockenheit, this bottling weighs in at a mere 11.5 percent alcohol, an alcoholic levity entirely compatible with textural richness and decidedly ripe fruit flavors. Brightly juicy, zesty lime and tangerine – pungently signaled on the nose – mingle with crunchy apple and succulent, piquantly pit-inflected cherry on a subtly oily palate, leading to a vibrantly sustained, consummately refreshing and stone-inflected finish.
  • Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 25 Ayler Riesling (Dry), Saar
    Mosel Fine Wines
    Rating: 87 (10/12/2017)

    The 2016er Ayler Fass 25 comes from the Scheidterberg and Rauberg hills, two secondary steep hills in Ayl. It develops a very nice nose of grapefruit zest, lavender, Provence herbs and smoky slate. The wine is nicely balanced and smooth on the palate and leaves a crisp and delicately creamy feel in the medium-long finish. Now-2021
  • Peter Lauer 2016 'Barrel X' Riesling (Off-Dry), Saar
    Mosel Fine Wines
    Rating: 87 (10/12/2017)

    The 2016er Barrel X is an off-dry Riesling made from purchased fruit as well as from estate vineyards. It offers a very nice nose of grapefruit zest, minty herbs, smoke and chalky minerals. The wine is direct and easy on the palate and leaves a pure and juicy feel of herbs and peach in the surprisingly long finish (certainly by “mere” Estate wine standards). Now-2021
  • Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 25 Ayler Riesling (Dry), Saar
    Rating: 89 (3/22/2018)

    Sourced from the estate’s holdings in the Scheidterberg and Rauberg, this managed to finish well within the range of legal Trockenheit, although, in keeping with recent Lauer conventions, explicit mention of the wine’s degree of dryness appears only on the winery’s price list, not the label, which instead bears a tiny “T” to signify in effect “dry-, or at least almost dry-tasting.” Grapefruit rind and quarry dust combine for a pungent nose, and the dense, full palate delivers juicy fresh grapefruit and white peach complemented by zesty piquancy and stone suffusion, leading into a sustained finish invigorating in its evocation of peach fuzz prickle.
  • Peter Lauer 2016 'Senior' Riesling, Saar
    Rating: 91 (3/22/2018)

    Scents of moss, wet stone, ripe pear and grapefruit lead to a silken-textured, succulently fruity, animatingly juicy palate that appears to reflect livelier acidity than many wines in the present collection, not least insofar as it cancels out any overt sense of sweetness from 13 grams of residual sugar. I wrote “appears” just now because, guess what? There aren’t even seven grams of acid here! (“Another example of why I don’t analyze my wines and start worrying about what I find,” quipped Lauer.) The long finish strikes a lovely balance between richness and lightly invigorating citrus peel piquancy, with an intriguing interplay of fruit, stone and pithy, smoky nut oils.
  • Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 17 Neuenberg Riesling, Saar
    Rating: 90 (3/22/2018)

    There were overripe, lightly desiccated and (to perhaps 5%) botrytized berries in the mix here, reported Lauer, but none of that is at all obvious, other than in terms of sheer flavor concentration. Grapefruit peel and peach fuzz lend stimulation, and hints of pencil lead and wet stone serve by contrast to set off the succulent peach and mirabelle fruit on a dense and otherwise silken-textured palate. This finishes with modest sweetness and some sense of opacity, but certainly admirable sheer persistence. Here is another instance in the present collection where richness is delivered at the sacrifice of charm.
  • Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 15 Stirn Riesling, Saar
    Rating: 92 (3/22/2018)

    Fresh grapefruit, lime, Persian melon and white peach emerge on the nose, and cooling mint and star anise accents as well as stony underpinnings join them on a silken-textured palate. Its fruit dominance and sense of sheer ripeness – supported by judicious sweetness – do not prevent this wine’s citrus elements from delivering a finish delightfully abundant in animating, refreshing sheer juiciness. With time, this should prove to be among the stars of the present collection.
  • Peter Lauer 2016 Fass 9 Kern Riesling, Saar
    Rating: 92 (3/22/2018)

    Grapefruit, pineapple and sage on the nose set the stage for an invigoratingly juicy, tangy, piquantly zesty and pungent impression on the wine’s polished, palpably extract-rich palate. The formidably sustained, judiciously sweet finish follows suit, with hints of cress and crushed stone adding to the vibrant stimulation supplied by this ball of Riesling energy. It’s worth reiterating that a feature quite likely conducive to high quality from Lauer’s Kern – despite this sector being farthest from river exposure and from the prow of the Kupp – is that it runs from top to bottom of the hillside, with a resulting heterogeneity of microclimate that may well conduce to vinous complexity.