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Otto

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WTN: Pinot Noir, Cidre Pays d'Auge, Cheese and Rambling

by Otto » Tue Jul 11, 2006 4:41 pm

I've never tasted a genuinely nice German Pinot. I still haven't, but this certainly was a step better than most. But still, I find that sweetness a bit much - they seem to lack grace, and are a bit artificial and clumsy and aren't food friendly. I'm sure there are good examples made, but I haven't tasted them. Which are they?

  • 2002 Leopold Schätzle Bombacher Sommerhalde Spätburgunder Rotwein trocken - Germany, Baden (7/11/2006)
    Very dark for the grape. The nose is very sweet as, indeed, most German Spätburgunders seem to be. There is vegetation, some rather dark toned fruit, and some savoury bitter scents, but little earthiness and no minerality. The palate is also sweetly fruity, it does have 6g/l RS, and is rather full bodied, has adequate acidity and is balanced. It has a nicely savoury aftertaste with a bit of minerality peeking through. I rather liked it though I would prefer more earth and rocks. But at nearly 19€ per bottle I'll pass.

Posted from CellarTracker

Being badly lactose intolerant I miss cheeses very much. I went to a cheese counter today and asked for some aged cheeses which are lactose free. Much to my surprise, I was told that they have one called Majorero from Spain which is lactose free but soft!!!! I had to try it. I still don't have an upset stomach, so I guess the unfamiliar person at the counter was right: this is lactose free though soft! It's a nice creamy cheese, reminiscent of Murcia but not so oily in consistency. I also had some old Gouda. With such cheeses what could be better than good, artisanal Cider or Lambic beer?

A recent arrival at our pathetic excuse for an alcohol shop, Alko-monopoly, is the Domaine de la Galotière 2004, AC Cidre Pays d'Auge. I took that in the hope that it would be like some of the Basque ciders I've tasted: drier than the Sahara, intensely acidic. Well, it wasn't. The scent was what I expected: earthy, with a savoury, metallic tinge to it - honest stuff. But the taste was sweet (40 g/l RS), lacking in acid, pedestrian. It did work well enough with the cheeses and was a nice enough drink, but I'll have to say I was a bit disappointed. Maybe that is just because I haven't had many French Ciders? Are they all like this?
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John S

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Re: WTN: Pinot Noir, Cidre Pays d'Auge, Cheese and Rambling

by John S » Tue Jul 11, 2006 7:28 pm

Here's one I had last year that surprised me:

2002 Waldulm Spätburgunder Kabinett - Germany, Baden (10/18/2005)
I was expecting the worst from this German Pinot, especially when I saw the 11% alcohol note on the bottle - I dreaded a severe, lean wine. The color was very light, but that could mean anything in a Pinot. The nose was a blend of barnyard, forest floor and cherry - hey, a great nose! My first tentative sip reveled a medium bodied wine with more cherry and other red berry fruit, more barnyard, and mushroom. The best part was the lovely silky texture. This would have been a great ringer in a village Burgundy tasting! A very tasty surprise. (B+)

I'm not likely to start up a Baden region Spatburgunder 'fetish', but this was a very nice pinot.

I've tried several vintages of Lingenfelder's 'Satyr' spatburgunder (from the Pfaltz), and it can be a reasonable pinot, but isn't great QPR for what it offers. Most German pinots I've tried range from the 'bleh' to the 'eh', but I hasten to add I haven't tried a large number of them, and I certainly don't have regular access to them either...
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Tim York

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Re: WTN: Pinot Noir, Cidre Pays d'Auge, Cheese and Rambling

by Tim York » Wed Jul 12, 2006 3:44 am

No! Dry cider is easy to obtain in Normandy and a lot of it is delicious in a young fruity way like (in style if not taste) a good, but less alcoholic, young Beaujolais. They can however never reach the heights of a mature grand cru or equivalent. I guess that only the sweeter variety is on sale in your local store on the pretext of its being more likely to please the nordic market.

The apple based Norman drink which for me stands out is Calvados. The best, e.g. those from Roger Groult, are on the level of really fine cognac.
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Re: WTN: Pinot Noir, Cidre Pays d'Auge, Cheese and Rambling

by Otto » Wed Jul 12, 2006 4:44 pm

John! How nice to hear that it was nice with only 11%! I really enjoy low alc wines.

Tim, you're absolutely right that it's sweet cider which sells well here, so our monopoly doesn't have any dry ones. And come to think of it, this is the only one which is sort of in the "artisanal" direction. :( Calvados isn't really my thing. The only hard alcohol I can palate is Islay and Island Malts, preferrably from the south parts of Islay.
I don't drink wine because of religious reasons ... only for other reasons.

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