Hey, I heard that - yes, YOU... You distinctly said, "Ewwwww!"
After this post you're gonna take that back, and you'll be RUNNING to the store to find this wine and I'm dead serious about that! And NO, I'm not a "wimpy white (wine) girl" - I can handle the big, fat, hairy red wines any day of the week and beg for more. BUT, at this time of the year, and with certain types of foods, Riesling is an excellent choice. Stick with me and you'll find out why...
We tasted our way through 6 wines last night, but I'll just tell you about my favorite!
The 2007 Chateau Ste. Michelle Dry (yes, DRY) Riesling was rated at the top of the dryness scale, scoring a 1 out of 10 (10 being sweetest). We got our two ounce pour in our B.A.G. (for those of you that don't follow Gary Vee on Wine Library TV, that's the Big Ass Glass!) So, we have a little bit of wine in the bottom of our B.A.G and we're doing the three S's ~ See Sniff Sip. Looks normal, not cloudy, very clear, pretty, pale yellow. Then I move on to the Sniffy-sniff, and was rocked back in my chair - the wine was so rich in aromatics it was bellowing out of the glass, great Riesling nose with a hint of floral and white peaches, and a whisper of lime (!) and orange blossom with a touch of chalky minerality (minus the classic Riesling petrol notes) VERY pretty nose! I could swirl and smell this wine for eons, such a beautiful bouquet!
I moved on to the Sip stage where all of the aromatics quickly became flavors, stone-fruits prominent, with peaches and a bit of apricot, still that lime with a searing, blazing acidity to offset the full-on fruit... That was my first thought, and comment to the group - Perfectly balanced wine. I took another sip and thought it couldn't get any better than that, until I squeezed a lime slice over the crabcake on my tasting plate, speared the cake with my fork and dragged it through the horseradish honey mustard sauce and popped it into my mouth and took a sip of the CSM Dry Riesling.... OMGOSH ~ WoW! Fantastic flavor combination! The creamy sauce over the rich crab, with the acidity of the wine, the bit of lime juice and the notes of lime in the Riesling... WoW again! It was a perfect marriage of plate and glass.
See what you're missing by dissing the Riesling? It's the Rodney Dangerfield of the wine world - it gets no respect! Over the last three or four years Riesling sales have been rising. And it's not just a bunch of wimpy white lovers who are getting behind this wonderful varietal either... Serious red wine drinkers who have serious palates often prefer a dry, balanced Riesling that offers them the complexities that many high-end Cabernet Sauvignons bring to the table - good fruit, high acidity, structure and firmness.
Riesling is also the wine of choice for foodies - you know, those people who love to cook and eat, and I do mean EAT - again terrific food wine, all that acidity is the perfect foil for creamy foods, spicy foods, and yes, even desserts (think cheese cake and creme` brulee).
So - give this varietal the respect it deserves...
Here are some other reviews:
FOOD & WINE MAGAZINE - Best American Wines $15 & Under: Chateau Ste. Michelle Dry Riesling ($12) "This is definitely one of the great wine bargains in the world. Lime-zest aromas, lively acidity, intense fruit—if you want to know why Riesling inspires such devotion, this is a great introduction to the grape. And starting last year Chateau Ste. Michelle sells this wine nationwide, instead of just in the northwest."
Fifth Annual Best Washington Wines - Best Riesling under $15 Seattle Magazine - 4/2010
Chateau Ste. Michelle 2007 Dry Riesling Columbia Valley "A consistent winner in Seattle Magazine's Washington Wine Awards, Chateau Ste. Michelle’s dry Riesling sets the standard for Washington’s inexpensive, dry style of this wine. In a field of five stellar Rieslings, this one rose to the top, with judges noting its ‘racy, mineral, elegant’ style, ‘alpine floral aromas’ and linalool aromas (spicy, sweet fruit)."