Thursday, April 30, 2009

Helfrich Vin d'Alsace Riesling 2007

Helfrich Vin d'Alsace Riesling 2007
Category: White Wine
Varietal: Riesling
Producer: Helfrich
Vintage: 2007
Country: France
Region: Alsace
Appellation: Alsace
Alcohol Content: 12.5%
Price Range: $10-15

Color & Clarity
The Helfrich 2007 Reisling is a clear, pale yellow wine with green tinges around the edges.

The positive, moderate aromas of the Helfrich 2007 Reisling are a combination of citrus and herbaceous elements. None are quite strong enough to identify clearly, but the blend is quite pleasant.

The Helfrich 2007 Reisling starts out with positive citrus flavors then moves to a crisp, dry, mineral finish of moderate length. In fact, the finish is a bit drier than the initial impression would suggest and the acidity of this wine develops over time.

Overall it's medium dry, light bodied, and reasonably well balanced. My wife, who has generally liked sweeter Rieslings, was very happy with this and now has more interest in trying and experimenting with drier Rieslings. It's a moderately complex wine that will probably continue to be worth drinking over the next couple of years, so if you can find it at a good price it should prove to be a decent value.

Although this Helfrich Riesling only received a score of 89 from Wine Spectator, I was really impressed by its flavors and how well it paired with fish. In comparison, the 2005 Hugel et Fils Riesling is widely considered an especially good vintage, but I didn't like it nearly as much. I'll get this Helfrich Riesling again and I'll recommend it highly to others, even those unsure about dry Rieslings, but I won't go out of my way to get the Hugel Riesling again.

Food Pairing
The acidity of the Helfrich 2007 Reisling makes it a bit too tart for my taste if I were just sitting and sipping it, but this wine really shines when paired with the right food. I had this Riesling with some salmon which really brought out the wine's citrus flavors and increased the aromas the developed in the back of my throat.

It was even better when a creamy dill sauce was added to the salmon, making the Riesling much smoother and sweeter. This also brought out an increased tingling just on the tip of my tongue. The Helfrich 2007 Reisling also went fairly well with asparagus and hollandaise sauce, which also made the wine a bit smoother and sweeter. You would be safe pairing this with just about any dish based on fatty fish and/or with creamy sauces.

Cross-Posted from A Taste of Wine

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

2005 J. J. Prum Kabinett Riesling ($30)

Check out the Chateau Petrogasm review of this wine:

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Woodward Canyon: Nelm's Road in Walla Walla

Here's a wine that I could almost make some peace with when it comes to an 89 score, but the only reason is due to the fact it's a "second" label. And at the same time, in spite of the fact it is a "second label," it's a second label for a world class winery.

Nelm's Road is the second label for Woodward Canyon. Woodward Canyon is one of the oldest wineries in the Walla Walla Valley and has had more than it's share of 90+ scores from the likes of Parker, 'Spectator and the 'Enthusiast. Woodward Canyon started producing their second label in 1998, offering Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon from Walla Walla and Washington State grapes. I know damn good and well, "Woody's" second label could stand up to a lot of high-end wines in a blind tasting. It's that good.

Nelms Road Merlot - 2007 received an 89 from the Wine Enthusiast. What I love about the Nelms Road reds, is I always know I'm getting a quality wine made with quality fruit. And typically these reds show off the essence of the Walla Walla Valley - - dark dried fruits, especially cherry. These wines are earthy and with the right elements, they can be cellared for about five years. And at $21, how can you beat the price for such quality?