I Love Organic Wine – An Alsatian Riesling

I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling

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Molsheim, Alsace sits at the foothills of the Vosges mountains on the Alsatian Wine Road (about 20 kilometers or 30 miles west of Strasbourg). In addition to its vineyards, it is home to the famous Bugatti automobile. This area is known for fine wine since the early Fourteenth Century. The winemaker’s family has been in business for three generations, which may seem like a lot to North Americans but makes them newcomers in a part of the world where wine-making generations are often counted in two figures such as fourteen. Alsatian wine tends to be somewhat pricey, as is the Riesling grape. Furthermore, going organic always comes with an increased price. So this wine comes in at less than I expected to pay.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review were purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Gerard Neumeyer Riesling Les Hospices 13.1% alcohol about $15

Let’s start by quoting the marketing materials. Description : The 2007 vintage in Alsace scored an ‘A’ in Wine Spectator’s annual Vintage Report Card. While some regions were plagued with problems, Alsace had one of the longest growing seasons in recent memory, making great classic wines like this hand-crafted Riesling from a small family estate. Tightly focused with bright acidity and an expressive minerality, this wine would match beautifully with smoked fish. Our QA Laboratory has determined that this wine contains 23 mg/L of free sulphur. And now for my review.

At the first sips the wine seemed elegant and tasted strongly of lemon. Its first pairing was with a commercial barbecued chicken with a side of potatoes roasted in chicken fat and a light, tomatoey sauce. When paired with the chicken wings and breast the wine was quite long with pleasant acidity and a touch of sweetness. Its acidity intensified to meet the grease of the potatoes. The Riesling maintained its elegance with the stronger tasting chicken leg. I got minerals and lemons. With a mixed tomato salad containing basil, the wine lost some acidity but retained its force.

The following meal involved ground beef in ground semolina jackets in a sour sauce containing Swiss chard. This is a delicious Middle Eastern specialty known as Kube. The Riesling became pleasantly sour with a countervailing touch of sweetness. It was quite long. There was pleasant citrus acidity with a tinge of sweetness. When accompanying fresh strawberries the Riesling presented minerality and a bit of sweetness. Initially it seemed flattened but then picked up.

My final meal was composed of a Portobello mushroom omelet accompanied by a spicy salsa containing tomato, onion, green pepper, cilantro and other ingredients. The wine was feathery and lightly acidic with some lime. The wine wasn’t strong enough for the overly spicy salsa but the lime in the wine joined with the lime in the salsa.

I ended the bottle with Matjes herring followed by two local cheeses. When paired with the herring this organic Alsatian presented apples and was quite long. It tingled in the mouth. This is probably the best wine for pairing with herring, at least in a long time. With an asiago cheese the Riesling was long showing well-balanced acidity with light fruit. The apples were green, but not too green. With a Swiss cheese the acidity stepped over the line and was somewhat harsh. The apples were still there.

Final verdict. This is one fine wine. I can’t remember when I enjoyed an organic wine as much. And the price is right. I’m going to taste this producer’s other wines.

Levi Reiss is the author or co-author of ten computer and Internet books, but really would rather just drink fine German or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Check out his global wine website is www.theworldwidewine.com with a weekly column reviewing $10 wines and new sections writing about (theory) and tasting (practice) organic and kosher wines.

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I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling
I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling
I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling
I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling
I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling

I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling

I Love Organic Wine - An Alsatian Riesling