Now for...a serious grape variety
Forget Merrr-loww. What about a serious grape variety? Like Riesling.
Riesling has a moral premium among white wine grape varieties. Wine geeks love Riesling. Have to.
Over the next few weeks I'm going to be taking a Riesling focus, which in real terms means drinking a lot of the stuff. I began tonight with three wines, two from Australia and one from Germany, but all in a vaguely similar style.
Yalumba Y Series Riesling 2006 South Australia
Bright, crisp and a bit smoky and minerally, with a nice herbal tang and an assertive, almost spicy citrussy character that's common to many Aussie Rieslings. There's also a bit of talcum powder character. A clean, precise style that is bone dry and food friendly. 87/100 (£6.50 Winedirect.co.uk, Auswinesonline.co.uk)
Mesh Riesling 2006 Eden Valley, Australia
A collaboration between Jeffrey Grosset and Robert Hill Smith (www.meshwine.com). Alive, limey, perfumed nose with a lovely crisp, bone dry, mineralic palate that verges on the austere with its high acidity, but it isn't heavy or phenolic. Distinctly savoury, this closes up a bit on the finish which is very tight. It would be interesting to see what this wine - sealed with a tin-lined screwcap - would look like under a closure that allows just a little more oxygen transmission. 90/100 (c. £14 Wine Society, Winedirect.co.uk, Handford)
Darting Durkheimer Michelsburg Riesling Kabinett Trocken 2005 Pfalz, Germany
Precise, crisp, lemony nose with a minerally, spicy edge. The palate is crisp and dry with a lovely citrussy character, together with a hint of honeyed warmth. Overall, this is crisp and dry, and quite simular to the Australian style, albeit with a bit more carbon dioxide spritz. A nice wine, and good value. 88/100 (£6.99 Marks & Spencer)