For the next foray into Grape Dates we’re heading over to the white side, and focusing our attention on a grape which doesn’t have the best rep in the UK. Let’s see if it can lure you in with its charms…
I’m so misunderstood! Everyone thinks I’m really sweet, but actually I can be lean, racy and even bubbly if you just give me a chance. My great bone structure helps me to age elegantly. Plus I have hidden depths that many never get the opportunity to experience. Don’t you want to peel back the layers and find the real me?
Age: A lady never tells. But I will let you in on a secret – I age very well
Country of Origin: Germany
Location(s): Deutschland, Austria, Alsace and I quite like it down under too.
Likes: Cool climates and my very close friend; Botrytis
Dislikes: People who can’t say my name right (it’s Ree-sling, not Rye-sling) and those who make sweeping assumptions about me.
Body type: My weight does tend to yoyo around quite a bit. Sometimes I can be quite lean and sometimes I’m more voluptuous. But I’m never, ever fat.
Children: I am seen as a mother to many fellow German varieties.
Smoking: Oak and I do not get along. I do often have a smoky edge kind of like gunflint though.
Drinking: Well it depends on my mood, sometimes I’m great alone but I really come into my element when you pair me with food.
I’m very refreshing, and versatile too. I can be full of fresh flavours like lime, green apple and honeysuckle when I’m young. With age I just keep on improving, developing riper fruit flavours such as stone fruit, as well as honey and often quite a distinctive petrol note. Please, don’t let that put you off – I can be really delicious.
Similar to: Sometimes people can confuse me with Chenin Blanc, but I think I’m pretty distinctive.
You can mix me with other grapes, but really I am outstanding enough to be worshipped alone. I am great with food, and pair well with anything from seafood (especially if I’m wearing my Australian colours) otherwise if I’m in a German mood then I find that Asian flavours suit me just right.
Met your match?
Riesling can suit a variety of tastes – the question is how sweet do you like yours?
Tim Adams Clare Valley Riesling, Australia, £10.79, Tesco
A touch of sweetness
Dr Loosen Riesling, Germany, £7.49, Sainsburys
Tamar Ridge Botrytis Riesling, Austria, £13.99, Waitrose
Josef Chromy Pepik Sparkling Sekt, Australia, £19.90, Grays and Feather