In another of this year's surprises, Miesbauer sprang a 2012 Gelber Traminer on me. It seems he'd forgotten to inform me that he planted these vines seven years ago in the original Sandgrube east of town, prompted not just by this grape's distinctive success at the Salomon's Undhof and at Knoll, but by the fact that the oldest wines in the Stadt Krems library cellar - from vintages 1960-1975 - are from this cepage and site. Peony and rose petal waft from the glass; then re-emerge on a glossy, full (14.5% alcohol) palate that nonetheless displays not only succulence but brightness and bounce. A hint of white pepper adds stimulation to a sustained finish. This grape has been known to display even more primary juiciness not to mention complexity than in the present instance, but the results here are delightful and promising. I would tentatively plan on enjoying them by 2020. (The inaugural bottling of Stadt Krems' Gelber Traminer was from vintage 2011, but because there were exactly 250 liters, they vinified it in a barrique, which results that Miesbauer describes as "not quite right.")
Fritz Miesbauer's team has recently been rejuvenated by the appointment of a very young Peter Rethaller as hands-on cellarmaster, and the bottled results in 2012 are as fine as any I have tasted since Miesbauer began his tenure as director in 2003. Miesbauer confirms my general impression that despite a dry 2012 growing season overall, health of fruit was a concern and selectivity critical with Riesling in more moisture-retentive sites. To be sure, most of his Riesling enjoys the advantages of altitude and Urgestein, but the degree of success scored with that variety here this year shocked as well as delighted me.
Score: 89 points -- David Schildknecht, Robertparker.com, Apr 2014