I remember my first introduction to Riesling. I was at one of my favorite restaurants back in the mid-nineties. At the time, my wine experience was limited to White Zinfandel. I asked my server to introduce me to something new. I was ready to move on from the pink stuff. He introduced me to Johannesburg Riesling. Like a lot of folks (some may not be willing to admit it), I initially thought this was a wine from South Africa. But, nope. It wasn’t. It is merely a varietal of the grape. This particular wine, I remember, was from Washington. I fell in love with Riesling on that day. My server may have coached me but I tasted hints of peach and honey and loved the overall fruitiness of what I was tasting. My new wine, Riesling. I remember shopping every Friday for Rieslings. More and more, the wines that I selected weren’t quite like the ones that I had tasted that evening at the restaurant. I have had some that are bone dry and others that are almost dessert wine clones. Why? Because I was tasting wines from various parts of the world. Yes, they were all Rieslings but why did they taste so different? The Rieslings from Washington tasted different from the ones from New York. And they tasted different from the ones grown in Germany. And then the Germans made them in their own range of styles that they identify on the bottles as Kabinett, Auslese, Spatlese, Beerenauslese…STOP!!! That seemed so overwhelming for me to learn. This was one grape, for goodness sake! But Riesling was my first teacher on how grapes grown in various parts of the world can make such a difference in the bottle. Most Rieslings are great food wines with their unique balance of acidity and fruit. ‘Tis the season for Riesling. Because of its versatility, it is a perfect food wine that pairs well with your traditional holiday fare. Try it with your turkey and sage dressing. Riesling…my first love.
Revelry Riesling is our November Wine of the Month at The Vine Wine Club. Use code “November” for free shipping on two or more bottles.
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