Sunday, December 5, 2010

2009 Beamsville Bench

2009 Thirty Bench Riesling

2009 Thirty Bench Riesling, VQA Beamsville Bench

The producer pours this wine for you when you step into the tasting room. For good reason too . . . this remains one of the truest expressions of Niagara riesling. A real, proper, Niagara riesling. Bright, pure, minerally, but also misunderstood. But you won't get that sense at the winery. Visitors to wine country are hit with palate confusion. They're so turned on by the fact that they're tasting at the winery that everything seems delicious, illuminating, ethereal. The inevitable letdown at home? Never trust someone when they tell you, oh, I just tasted the greatest wine ever last week at this winery.

What I mean by this wine being misunderstood is that it's incredibly austere in its youth. People won't speak up at the winery (read above). But at home, the extraordinary acidity and lean texture this wine shows is shocking. It's too often dismissed as this sourish, reedy little wine - big misconception. This wine demands aging, demands patience for the acidity to soften and integrate. So give it some time, give these wines a chance. Don't let the soft, post-coital glow of a winery visit cloud your judgement, but don't be so quick to dismiss it either.


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