Tag Archives: white wine

2011 Weiser-Künstler Enkircher Ellergrub Riesling Kabinett


Pick up some champagne with your wine.

Disclaimer: I entered into a tentative agreement with the online wine retailer Wine Chateau under which they sponsor two of my posts per month. Wine Chateau has no influence on the topic I select for the post or its content. Opinions expressed are all mine.</id

I wrote this piece a while back but never published it…it is still a good summer story.

It is about time I write about a Riesling again, especially before I go on my summer break…and the time for a wonderful wine came after our Napa Cabernet Sauvignon vertical.

I have written about the winery Weiser-Künstler extensively before, you can see my winery visit report here. I even wrote a post before in which I compared this wine with the 2011 Spätlese from the same vineyard. When I want to impress friends with a good Riesling, this is one of the few wineries I tend to pick out for that purpose. The quality is usually very good, and the wines have the ability to even make less enthusiastic wine drinkers appreciate what good Riesling can stand for. It has been about a year now since I tried this wine last, so it might be interesting to compare the notes for this wine, a year later. As a reminder, the wine has 8% ABV and comes from a vineyard that the importer describes as the “Scharzhofberg” of the Mosel…pretty high praise, especially when you know my very weak spot for the Scharzhofberg. I tend to agree. All the wines from this hill that I have had were incredibly pleasant…

But back to my old notes; in June 2012 I described the wine like this:

“The 2011 Weiser-Künstler Enkircher Ellergrub Riesling Kabinett had a nose of spontaneous fermentation, something I will write about in another post in more depth. Suffice it to say that the wines initially are more smelly/stinky when poured than you expect, which levels out after a bit. On the palate, the wine was lean, with yellow fruits and enough acidity to carry it. The wine held a perfect balance of acidity and sugar and was just great to drink. It was refreshing and easy to drink.”

Now, in June 2013, I am looking at my notes and it is actually pretty interesting:

The 2011 Weiser-Künstler Enkircher Ellergrub Riesling Kabinett showed itself in a very pale, light color, it looked almost as clear as water. That was surprising, I didn’t remember it that way. In the nose, spontaneous fermentation was still very prominent, followed by peach aromas. On the palate, this medium bodied wine seemed very ripe, with aromas of peach, pear and some cream. There was a rather low acidity this time around, still noticeable, but definitely less prominent than my previous note suggested. The wine had a rather short finish. A bit into the tasting, I started getting some strawberry aromas. I liked this wine a lot. It has a sophistication to it that is very pleasant. It is not a deep wine, but it changes enough in the glass to keep surprising you again and again. In a more subdued state right now, less refreshing than in 2012.

The wines are imported by vom Boden (who have an excellent German portfolio!) and are therefore available in the US. Weiser-Künstler produces in rather low quantities, so if you ever come across this label, which is rather easy to remember, pick up a bottle. Who knows when you will next see one. And I bet you won’t be disappointed…

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Tracy Lee Karner: 2011 Forster Kirchenstück Riesling inspires happiness

Somewhere, beyond the SeaThis is the fifth installment in my guest blogger series “Somewhere, Beyond the Sea”. For this post, I asked the author, life enjoy-er, honorary German (at least in my book), and good friend Tracy Lee Karner to contribute. I met Tracy through her blog, when, on a whim, I decided to comment on her post about whether blogging is just another cherry-berry pie in the sky back in August 2012. The ensuing conversation led to more contact, and by now I consider her and her husband Ken pretty much family. What I love about her blog is that you never know what to expect when you head over there. Sometimes it is writing advice, sometimes memorization help or language tips, and sometimes just plain fun. Tracy embraces life, and her blog shows it. Also, she is among my top commenters which says something about her commitment. Long story short: Go check out her blog. Thank you, Tracy!

Sometimes it's wine, sometimes it's water that makes us happy enough to yodel...

On a fine day in May, a good drink might make a person happy enough to yodel.

“Then, because of the [wine] and mostly and mainly because we were for that one moment in all time a group of truly happy people, we began to yodel.” (M.F.K. Fisher, H is for Happiness.)

I had spent an exceedingly fine May day with my husband, my dear friend Kai and his wife, with blue skies, wispy clouds, and apple-blossom scented sea breezes. Its magnificence echoed the last May day Kai and I had been together–same weather; same invigorating realization that the season of cooing doves and joyful air has sprung; same sweet and easy friendship.

The last time in 1979 in Hamburg, we were sixteen, walking, shopping, eating and talking, talking, trying not to mention that we didn’t know when or if we would ever see each other again. I was leaving soon to live the rest of my life in America.

In the present re-creation of that wonderful day, we again knew time was short. He and his wife would end their visit and return to Germany.

But for the moment we were together and blissful, gathered around a small marble-topped table in a cafe on Federal Hill in Providence, drinking cappuccino, sharing a lusciously layered chocolate torte. I resisted that urge to yodel because it would have annoyed the people who were there to buy fresh pasta, Italian cheese, salami or olives. Besides, I’m an incredibly poor yodler.

But I was that happy, I could have raised my voice in spontaneous, merry song.

The day ended as all such days end, with tearful embraces. And then they were gone.

We had our memories and a bottle of wine, 2011 Forster Kirchenstück Riesling Kabinett Trocken (dry) Deutscher (German) Prädikatswein (quality wine with specific attributes).

Before we opened it, I asked the amazing-riesling-expert Winegetter what should I know to appreciate this gift? He willingly shared his expertise, explaining that the grapes were grown in a 3-1/2 hectares vineyard behind the Forst village church on the wine road (that’s near Kai’s home).

Recently Ken and I opened the Forster Kirchenstück as an aperitif, according to Oliver’s suggestion.

Small bottle, long skinny neck with a too-long cork, unusually difficult to open (slightly annoying). I, however, was determined to love this wine. Kai gave it to us!

In the glass: Tinged the color of a nearly-ripe yet slightly green bartlet pear, so pale as to appear almost clear. Crystal transluscence.

Nose: Faint blossoms–apple & honeysuckle. Uncomplicated. Hint of fresh grass.

Mouth: Thinnish. Fresh, quick taste of tart apple, crisp mineral undertone, short lemon finish. I’d love this with fresh-shucked raw oysters.

Overall: Nice–but Ken found a flaw. On the middle-to-back sides of his tongue, a bitter-pucker sensation, the residue of green apple peels. Recommended therefore with some reservation. Less than perfect, but pleasant enough, drinkable and refreshing.

(Thank you, Stefano Crosio, for introducing me to the Italian Sommelier Association guidelines for wine review. I really like this 3-pronged method!)

More subjectively–and why I liked the wine despite the flaw: it opened a magical window into timelessness, taking me back to Germany, October 1978. I was telling Ken all the details, about picking grapes for a vineyard near Forster Kirchenstück and eating deliciously earthy, pit-roasted potatoes out of my hand, whole, with nothing but salt.

His turn to talk: in the twenty years of our marriage, he frequently mentioned his time as sous-chef at The Wagon Wheel Lodge, but had never before described the German butchers Heinrich and Albert who educated him about Riesling.

Albert looked something like a blond, not-quite-so-plump Ed Asner. Heinrich was taller, nearly six feet, with piercing pale blue eyes. Dark brown short, side-parted hair and a face not unlike Martin Luther’s.

Those were the guys who taught Ken sausage-making, and how to drink dry Riesling (with Weisswurst, or boiled cod, and sometimes with a dense white bread, toasted, topped with an egg poached medium).

With our next sip we, of course, drank to friendships–old and new.

So what do you think? Would you like this wine? And if not, is there a particular Riesling (or any wine) that could make you yodel like Franzl Lang? (you have to click here, really you have to hear happiness!)

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Sunday Read: Top 10 Songs featuring Moscato

Hundreds of French wines for your enjoyment.

Disclaimer: I entered into a tentative agreement with the online wine retailer Wine Chateau under which they sponsor two of my posts per month. Wine Chateau has no influence on the topic I select for the post or its content. Opinions expressed are all mine.

Ok, this was too good to pass up. I stumbled across this video slideshow via Smartaboutwine, a very dedicated blog that compiles interesting news stories surrounding wine. I am subscribed to it and have definitely used some of the ideas for my Sunday Read.

Apparently, and completely unbeknownst to me (but that doesn’t say much…), Moscato of all wines has become quite the rage among youngsters in the US, with sales climbing sharply (over $300 million in the US and doubling of sales in Canada in 2011). Whether that is due to the fact that the sweet wine has been featured in at least ten song lyrics or not might be up for debate, but it is definitely noteworthy…The Drinks Business therefore felt it was time to compile a slide show of music videos featuring Moscato in their lyrics.

And so, here it comes: the Top 10 Moscato Songs…weird. Definitely weird. The true reason I am posting this is to impress my buddy The Food and Wine Hedonist, who is so much cooler than I am, by at least once linking to a video slide show that includes pop and hip hop…:) I am feeling so badass right now.

Have a great Sunday!!

The Drinks Business: Top 10 Songs featuring Moscato

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