Thomas Haag, the winemaker at Schloss Lieser since ’92 and its owner since ’97, is also the brother of Oliver Haag and son of legendary Wilhelm Haag at the Fritz Haag estate, one of the most illustrious names in German winemaking. Thomas has a quiet intensity about him, much like his wines. He doesn’t bow to any popular wine making style; he makes wines his way and in a unique, terroir-driven style. His 9.5ha of vineyards include a 1.7ha parcel of the Brauneberger Juffer, with which his family is inextricably linked, as well as small plots in Bernkasteler Badstube, Graacher Domprobst and Graacher Himmelreich. But we feel the strength of the Lieser collection lies in the intoxicatingly perfumed wines from the Niederberg Helden. Thomas owns 4.5ha of this beautiful but scarily steep cliff face of vines, towering above the river below. With their dark mineral style and resplendent character, Schloss Lieser’s wines from the Helden deserve recognition whenever top Mosel estates are discussed. Please note: due to high demand and small supply, these wines are scarce every vintage. The word on 2008: “Like ’04, but better,” opines Thomas Haag. “The important thing was the acidity was high—but also ripe.” One of the few estates to make Auslese and GKA wines in ’08. These are tightly wound, beautiful wines that evolve slowly in the glass.