During my WSET tutoring, I received a practice question that showed us these two labels and asked the following question:
These two premium quality wines have very different characteristics. Under the headings below explaining how what happens as the grapes develop, up to the point when they are crushed, has a direct impact on the style and quality of these two wines.
Riesling. Oh Riesling. You poor stereotyped varietal. While I’ve had some fun and, for lack of a better word, tasty Rieslings from the States, I have to say that, for the most part, what our New World has done to the variety is a bit of a shame. What’s more, is I feel like there’s a bit of a stigma surrounding German wines — a few sweet Gewürztraminers and suddenly folks think everything from the cool Rhine region is sweet. When, in fact, it is just the opposite. For the most part Germans tend to make (and enjoy) the dryer style wines (and warm beer, but that’s a different story).
Lucky for me I made a new friend at a local wine shop. A sommelier whose specialty is German and Austrian wine. So when I asked him to pour my anything he recommended that would help me discover the area, he asked “how do you feel about Riesling.” My response, “As long as its as dry as God intended it.” So this is what he poured me. This is what I bought. This is what I enjoyed again and can’t wait to enjoy again.
I present to you Riesling from the Rhine…
Let me start off by saying that this wine is my definition of a “Daily Drinker.” Not only is it easily accessible, both in price and on the palate, but it comes in a cute little half bottle at my local Whole Foods Market. I’m a big fan of the half bottle for a during the week drink — think of it as portion control. You know when it’s only Tuesday, but you really want a glass or two of wine, but you really don’t want to open a whole bottle and make vinegar for the weekend? Yeah, that’s when half bottles are awesome. And when the flavor profile is easy on the palate, well, that’s just bonus points.
Little did I know that my weekday, “Daily Drinker” actually has a bit of a story and a little more depth than I originally gave it credit for…