So it's that time of year again... the end of those painful exams, the smell of burning sausages, red sunburnt noses (or is that just mine?) and when tennis becomes everyone’s favourite sport (for two weeks)... all this must mean the summer months are here. I personally see this as the perfect opportunity for some fine food, good friends and a glass of some tasty German grape juice, which is what we did last weekend. So read on if you’re looking to get that summer-lovin’ shindig off to a start of epic portions, look no yonder than the bottle of DR. LOOSEN’s, Riesling Kabinett 2008

Dr.Loosen Riesling, is a still, white wine crafted in the vast hillsides which roll around Mosel, South Germany. In fact, the bottle of tasty little grapes that my friends devoured last weekend were from a particular vineyard within the Loosen estate called “Erdener Treppchen”. I have since been informed (as I did P.E instead of GCSE German) that it is translated to “The little staircase of Eden”. The 2008 vintage is priced at £12.99 and may require a few more English pence than you would normally part with for a bottle of wine, however for a matured bottle of German Riesling, from a premium wine producer, is a bargain that David Dickinson couldn’t say no to it.

 

 

Despite sounding like a biblical Led Zeppelin B side, this vineyard and whole region of Mosel looks like a stunning setting for this mouth-watering creation. The region is one of the most northern areas for wine production in the world, so the combination of the cool climate and Riesling grapes are the finest amalgamation I have stumbled upon since Morrissey and Marr. The “Kabinett” on the label declares a dry taste, and indicates that the grapes were fully ripened when harvested, typically in September. Riesling is often described as “wines best kept secret”, and so far I haven’t found anyone who makes this stuff better than Dr. Loosen. Since my first sniff of the Doctor just a few months ago, I’ve been blabbing this “secret” to anyone who will listen, so listen up...

When poured, the glass illuminates with a soft golden green autumn leaf colour, a quick swirl indicates a low alcohol content (as does the label) of 7.5%. A deep inhale (hayfever permitting) will release an aroma that Winnie the Pooh would admit is tastier than the finest honey, this sweetness is then balanced out with a floral smell of a fresh mixed bouquet. The combination of sweetness and flowers makes this the perfect wine if you’re considering going on “Dinner Date” or just aiming to impress a special lady or fella this weekend.

The final scent that strikes you between the septum is that a light petrol fume which is concealed underneath that sweet fruit, honey tang. This petrol undercurrent is common with Riesling, (don’t confuse that description with the smell of an M40 service station) It’s more of a pure zing and intensifies all the flavours that are bouncing around your glass.

The first slurp is smooth and sweet which produced big smiles from all last weekend (as seen in the attached photo and Paul’s enchanted smile). The floral scents remain, however they are overtaken by citrus, apricots and lemony flavours which mingle with a ripe pink lady apple adding a needed touch of acidity. The warm honey smoothness blends with the floral and fruity flavours, whilst the three year aging process has reduced the sharp, sweet texture to a matured, slightly dry, well rounded finish of white goodness.

In order to get this declaration of summer party started, resident chef (my new roomy) served up some spicy Chicken Udon Noodles and some Chinese Duck Pancakes. As an aperitif this wine is dangerously easy to drink and all of us where looking for seconds before the food was ready. The tang of the citrus and lemon fruit, combined with the oriental spice, works as well as a BIG Aussie Shiraz with BBQ'ed MEAT. All the flavours of the sweet chilli source unite with the matured Riesling taste, which balances better than a 2012 gymnast. The roasted Duck was stunning and I even saw off the last of the leftovers, however it did collide with the sweet Riesling which produces a slightly tart aftertaste. However, stir-fried chicken with those big chunky Udon noodles, add a touch of light spice and you’re on to a winner.

So there it is, my first write up. It took slightly longer than planned but hopefully you got something out of it. It was a pleasure to share something that I genuinely believe is worth sharing with you all. So go to your local wine guy or gal and have a look for a tall, long distinctive bottle and make your own appointment with the Doctor (see pic below). Whilst you’re at it, I would pick up two bottles, as we found out, as soon as your friends or that hot date get a sniff its all gone quicker than you can say Erdener Treppchen.

Much Love,

Phil Bailey, Wine Punks.

 

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