This German import is sold under the Cupcake label but is bottled in Germany by a company given the designation D-RP – 907 009. That’s a sexy name for a winery, isn’t it? After some digging, it appears to me that the responsible party is likely one J.F. Brems GmbH in Zell. A small town of roughly 4,300 residents situated on the Mosel River, Zell is best known for another wine. One I remember my mother buying and sipping when I was just a little tyke. Zell is the home of the Zeller Schwarze Katz. But this particular bottle is not a Schwarze Katz selection, it is a Qualitätswein Riesling from Pfalz.
Notes: The color was bright golden yellow. The bouquet held scents of tart apple and fragrant peach. Alcohol was at 10.5% in this Pfalz white that was light-bodied and somewhat low in acidity. Flavors I tasted centered around a core of tart apple. Not green apple, but more of a Braeburn type sweet and tart. I also caught hints of peach and a touch of lemongrass on the finish. Clearly, given the flavor profile I’ve listed, this wine is not devoid of acidity. I just think that a tad more would have given it the play-on-the-tongue quality that I enjoy in my favorite Rieslings. If your preference is for something a little more mannerly … well, here you go! It isn’t overly complex and the price is reasonable, so it’s a decent candidate to pair with a relaxed meal – maybe a lightly spicy vegetable stir fry or a quick pan-fried pork chop.
OK. Here is the third in my promised trio of German wine tastings. It’s another Riesling from the Pfalz region – this time a 2012. Here’s what I found in this simple, straight-forward wine.
Vineyard: Domherrenberg Kellerei for Trader Joe’s
Varietal: Joseph Händler Riesling
Appellation: Pfalz, Germany
Price: $5.49 at Trader Joe’s
Notes: The wine is a very pale straw color in the glass. On the nose I got lemon and white peach. Like the Spätlese I recently tasted, this Riesling has good acidity which gives the tongue an effervescent zing immediately (but in a more restrained way). The primary flavors for me were apricot, lemon and green apple with green apple peel on the finish. It’s fairly sweet at 10% alcohol, but the acidity and flavors make it seem less sugary than other selections at the same ABV. Overall the experience was pleasant – less dramatic than the Spätlese but equally pleasing. I wouldn’t consider serving this one at dessert, though. This wine sits solidly in the “good for a picnic” category for me. It would also be nice served at a cheese and wine gathering.
By the way, don’t think I’m finished with German wines. I’m not. Ich komme zurück. Ohne Zweifel!!
Important: I am not a professional sommelier or wine connoisseur. See “About” for the full disclaimer.
Following up on my intent to broaden my wine horizons and in the interest of internationalism, I’m going to be tasting 3 wines from Germany in the next few days. This is the first. You may remember that I wrote a post not too long ago about a nice red I’d tasted at a local watering hole where they have good live music, too. Anyway, things went so well with the red that I thought I’d give one of their whites a try.
Price: Not Available
Notes: It was simple, light bodied and for me light on flavor. What I tasted was lime and peach (with the fuzz on the quick finish). Dry – Sweet? This Riesling comes in at 11.5% alcohol. It wasn’t bad at all, but I just didn’t think it brought that much to the table. I almost didn’t post this review because I couldn’t find this wine at retail anywhere in my area – or even online for that matter – for this vintage. But then I thought maybe others would run into it at their local haunt/restaurant/etc., so I went ahead. I’m thinking maybe this pub doesn’t go through much Riesling and they should’ve served this a year ago. I see that Lucashof gets good reviews for their wines, so I am going to give another of their selections a try in the future.