Browse Tag


Hune are you?

Trimbach 2001 Riesling Clos Ste-Hune (Alsace) – Open two days, before which it was described to me as tasting like a Shun knife. After all that aeration? Pine and Rainier cherry skins, white leaves, peonies. Cylindrical and focused, despite a lot of textural generosity – perhaps density is a better word, for this is an intensely gravitic wine – and not without its showy aspects, either. This is going to be a stunner…not that anyone who tasted it at release will be surprised to hear that. (1/11)


Trimbach 1994 Riesling “Cuvée Frédéric Émile” (Alsace) – Drying. Salted vegetables, nut-infused metals. Round but with tattered edges and borders, and occasionally dallying with a swampy character. Thickens and broadens with air, to the point that – twenty-four hours later, it’s actually better than it was at opening. But it’s still tottering on its last legs. It’s not bad, it’s just prematurely old. (1/11)

The knife

Sipp Mack 2002 Riesling “Vieilles Vignes” (Alsace) – Not the most vibrant bottle, whether closed or muted. Salty – very salty – and wet, like soaked feet after traipsing through the grass. Some dry-as-a-bone raw iron, but solid rather than flecked and suffusing. I’ve had better examples of this of late. (2/11)


Trimbach 2001 Riesling “Réserve” (Alsace) – With the Cuvée Frédéric Émile pushing $60 (in my market; it’s less abusive elsewhere, and I say “abusive” because I’m assured by Someone Who Should Know that the wine’s not exactly selling like hotcakes in the States these days), it’s nice to have an really inexpensive reminder of just how perfectly iconic a good Trimbach riesling can be. This is à point, in that the saltiness of the iron flakes has overwhelmed any lingering sort of malic snappishness, and still vibrant and fulsome in its saber-sharp fashion. A very, very emblematic wine. (2/11)

Trimbach 2002 Riesling (Alsace) – Columnar and iron-dominated. Ungenerous, but that’s no surprise from this wine at this age. As mature as it’s going to get, and quite tasty for what was a pretty inexpensive wine. (1/11)

Hairy wig

Zind-Humbrecht 2001 Riesling Herrenweg de Turckheim (Alsace) – Medium-density metal-jacketed pear and mineral dust. Fully mature and quite good. Dry as a dried-out bone in the desert. (1/11)

Heyden Caulfield

Dr. Heyden 2009 Riesling Oppenheimer Sackträger Riesling Spätlese 12 10 (Rheinhessen) – Nuclear. (Sorry, too easy.) The wine’s also too easy, bringing basic spätlese without much riesling. (12/10)

Cardboard Boxler

Boxler 2004 Riesling “Réserve” (Alsace) – The Chadderdon-imported domestic (U.S.) bottling that carries no letter indicator, and thus I have no idea of what it’s actually made, other than riesling. Of which it tastes. Clean, crisp, minerally, and kinda foursquare. The least interesting bottle from Boxler I’ve ever experienced, but given the producer that’s still a pretty tasty quaff. There’s much better out there, however. Maybe an unrepresentative bottle? (12/10)

Herrenweg the owl

Zind-Humbrecht 2001 Riesling Herrenweg de Turckheim (Alsace) – Indice 1, which means dry. Now featuring: beautiful minerality, the kind that may not be unique to Alsace, but does mark it. What I mean here is the creamed-iron form, salty and free-electron at the surface, but dense and liquid at the core. Intense and vibrant. Perfectly mature. To this known ZH-detractor, Humbrecht does his best work at the extremes of dry and sweet, and it’s the rest that is too often soupy and leaden. (12/10)

Zind-Humbrecht 2001 Riesling Herrenweg de Turckheim (Alsace) – More aged than the previous bottle, with the dusty and salt intact, but a lot of erosion from the foundation. It’s still nice, but other bottles have been better. (1/11)

Trim the sails

Trimbach 2004 Riesling (Alsace) – More advanced than other bottles from the same source (me), and were the others not in full song I’d say this is a little past ready. Probably just cork variation. Dryer than dry, showing unadorned raw iron and not a whole lot else. Well, acid, but that’s a given here. (11/10)

Not a hot rock

Josmeyer 2005 Riesling “Les Pierrets” (Alsace) – Bright. I don’t mean this in the usual sense, in which a preference towards acid and shinier fruit is suggested, but that there’s something that reminds me of actual luminescence in this wine. Everything one wants from an Alsatian riesling, dialed back a little bit for earlier approachability. Very nice. (11/10)