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Wine and Food

Alexander van Dülmen

Colle Vecchio, Offida Pecorino, 2007

Colle Vecchio, Offida Pecorino, 2007, white wine from Italy

5,5 points

I never believed that this experiment would end well! Two or three years ago I discovered that I still had one bottle left of a rather typical – certainly not top – white wine from Cocci Grifone, vintage 2007. If someone had asked me – even five years ago, I would have said that this wine had very likely gone bad. I would have been wrong. And I was wrong. From the first nose it was clearly not off. But would it be a good wine? To my great surprise, the wine was still very good and, due to its age, had probably become something special.

Continue reading “Colle Vecchio, Offida Pecorino, 2007”

Quail’s Gate Pinot Noir, 2014

Quail’s Gate Pinot Noir, 2014, red wine from Canada

3 points

Some of my friends recently said ‘Canadian and wine are two words which don’t really go well together’. I am afraid it is true in certain regards. This Pinot Noir comes from an area not really well-known for wine: British Columbia in Canada. Quail’s Gate sits on the west side of Okanagan Lake, a 3 1/2 hour hour drive northeast from Vancouver. I haven’t been there yet and I’m not sure if I’ll ever get there. My knowledge of this wine region is very limited – perhaps Stefan Hartmann – the former chef at Berlin’s restaurant Hartmann, currently chef at Vancouver’s restaurant Bauhaus, can contribute some interesting notes on the area.

qg-panoramic-9-14x5.jpg Continue reading “Quail’s Gate Pinot Noir, 2014”

Michael’s Restaurant, New York

Michael’s Restaurant, New York, USA

5 points

If you like to see expensive, ugly outfits and dresses, go to “Michael’s” in New York. Tasteless but certainly posh combinations of grey and light blue, unsuitable suits, tight rose sport coats with beige trousers…  and most of the guests aren’t young and beautiful either – wealthy bankers, elder show hosts and politicians – a sophisticated New York cosmos which, as an outsider, you might not experience very often. “Look, there’s the former Secretary of the Treasury! And he’s having lunch with …” Michael’s restaurant is a sort of institution in New York, which most inhabitants have heard of but perhaps have never been to. As a foreigner, you wouldn’t even know about it. It is located in a midtown business district. Continue reading “Michael’s Restaurant, New York”

Chateau Brillette, Moulin de Médoc, 2006

Chateau Brillette, Moulin de Médoc, 2006, Grand Vin de Bordeaux, Red wine from France

4,5 points

This wine is much nicer than I expected! Spicy, dark berries, very dry, with strong tannins, but still very enjoyable. There is tobacco and even a note of bitter chocolate. The wine is full-bodied and quite potent. However, somehow it’s like a volcano that just can’t explode due to being covered by a huge layer of stones. You’re always expecting that something might still happen with this wine, but it doesn’t. For what it is: it’s good wine! A Bordeaux blend which is affordable, made from Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon and little bit of Petit Verdot. In other appellations, the winemaker would add Cabernet Franc, which of course could make the wine a bit more elegant. This certainly wasn’t the intention of this maker; therefore it’s a rather bulky if not a fat wine. If I were asked what’s missing, I would say: some elegance. Continue reading “Chateau Brillette, Moulin de Médoc, 2006”

Visellio, Tenute Rubino, Primitivo Salento, 2006

Visellio, Tenute Rubino, Primitivo Salento, 2006, Red wine from Italy

7 points

I am actually surprised at myself — for giving this wine 7 points. For a Primitivo! But it’s an honest score. Many years ago, together with my team, we visited the Tenute Robino winery. What a noble name: “Noble Estate” – although it strongly contradicts the location of the winery. If you’d expect a charming, romantic estate somewhere in Apulian hills, surrounded by vines and olive trees — well, you’d be quite mistaken. Unfortunately, Tenute Rubino’s location is in the suburbs of Brindisi, which are really ugly. There are so many beautiful places, villages and towns in Apulia, but the worst are the suburbs of Bari and, even more so, Brindisi. Visually a killer, socially probably very problematic — and, like in the industrial areas of such cities, completely faceless and dusty. Although the building is quite modern and very functional, it lacks any flair. It reminds me of Cosimo Taurino (https://avdwineandfood.net/2015/06/01/patriglione-salento-2001-cosimo-taurino/), which I also visited some years ago – another unattractive place. But both produce good wine.

Continue reading “Visellio, Tenute Rubino, Primitivo Salento, 2006”

Einsunternull, Restaurant, Berlin

Einsunternull, Restaurant, Berlin, Germany

5,5 points

It is astonishing to see how many restaurants have opened during the last few years in Berlin. Einsunternull is another modern and perhaps trendsetting restaurant in the same vein as Nobelhart & Schmutzig. Einsunternull means one below zero, a reference to the floor level of the restaurant rather the level of quality. In Germany, zero is the ground floor, so the restaurant is actually in the cellar.

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Freakshow, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013

Freakshow, A „Michael David Joint“, The Strongest Man on Earth, Lodi, California, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013, Red-wine from USA

3,5 points

I began my last review of “The Seven Deadly Zins” with this note: “Art and design are certainly a question of taste.” (The Seven Deadly Zins, 2013, Lodi Old Vine, Zinfandel) I certainly didn’t expect anyone to top that last label!  And it’s the same winemakers who have created this – let me say – impressive label. You can call them courageous or perhaps just possessing a strong instinct for kitsch. In any case: another remarkable wine label, it’s unforgettable!

Continue reading “Freakshow, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2013”

The Seven Deadly Zins, 2013, Lodi Old Vine, Zinfandel

The Seven Deadly Zins, 2013, Lodi Old Vine, Zinfandel, Lodi, California, Red-wine from USA

5 points

Art and design are certainly a question of taste. Once you’ve seen the label of this wine, you’ll definitely be able to find it again. Personally, I find it really ugly. From a marketing point of view, it’s quite successful — since you can be sure that everyone will recognize it the second time around. This should also apply to the name of the wine also, shouldn’t it? Isn’t it funny? No! It is not! You can read the back label about the wine and its motto. Perhaps it’s only to sell more bottles, or whatever they think encourages people to drink. In any case, the only comment I can make is this: even in America (or: particularly in America) the Catholic Church and good wine seem to have a close connection.
Continue reading “The Seven Deadly Zins, 2013, Lodi Old Vine, Zinfandel”

Dolphin, Restaurant, Hanalei

PlDolphin, Restaurant, Hanalei, Kauai, USA

5,5 points

Housed in one of the few older buildings in Hanalei, Dolphin is a combination of restaurant, tavern and sushi bar. Fame and legend – both expressions are connected to this fish restaurant — which feels like it’s almost at the end of the world. If all ends of the earth are as beautiful as Hanalei Bay, I would travel more. Jonathan Deckter, who strongly encouraged me to go to Dolphin, was completely right about it. It is a great place: rather easy, half open-air, since it’s never cold at Kauai – and a half-open kitchen, plus some outside seating on the surrounding grass. Continue reading “Dolphin, Restaurant, Hanalei”

Providence, Restaurant, Los Angeles

Providence, Restaurant, Los Angeles, USA

7 points

Simply put: this is the best restaurant I’ve encountered so far in Los Angeles. How many years have I been coming to Los Angeles and eating bad or what I’d call just decent food? Even when friends have invited me out somewhere – and of course they always mean very well – they’ve brought me to loud either show-offy event places or simply to uninspiring restaurants.

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Peters, Riesling Auslese, 2007, Martha’s Weinberg

Peters, Riesling Auslese, 2007, Martha’s Weinberg, White wine from Germany

7,5 points

Some time ago I posted two reviews about Johannes Peter’s Scharzhofberger Riesling. You can find a lot of information about the winery at: https://avdwineandfood.net/2015/05/11/peters-schwarzhofberger-riesling-spatlese-2007/ and https://avdwineandfood.net/2015/08/01/peters-scharzhofberger-riesling-spatlese-2012/.

This particular wine, Martha’s Weinberg, actually does not appear on Peter’s website. Johannes Peters writes: Continue reading “Peters, Riesling Auslese, 2007, Martha’s Weinberg”

Drei Sonnen, Hotel and Restaurant, Serfaus

Drei Sonnen, Hotel and Restaurant, Serfaus, Austria

2,5 points

If you don’t already know an area well, you find yourself searching online for the right places to stay and to eat. Presuming that you read my reviews regularly, you should already know that in most cases I choose hotels on the basis of good cuisine. The four-star hotel “Drei Sonnen” at Serfaus doesn’t offer only high quality but apparently also a “Kulinarium”! (http://www.dreisonnen.com/). What an amusing description. This need to always find or create new terms, like “gourmet restaurant” – another preposterous phrase – Kulinarium isn’t a real word, of course. You might think it would have its origin in Latin, but it doesn’t. Is it a place, a room, or an auditorium where you experience culinary delectability? It is a very grandiloquent notion, which of course suggests something extraordinarily special. Particularly compared to all of its neighbors; in Serfaus every second building is either a hotel, a holiday flat to rent, or a gastronomic establishment. Well, I didn’t make my choice only because of the absurd institution of  “kulinarium,” but because I got a good deal.

Continue reading “Drei Sonnen, Hotel and Restaurant, Serfaus”

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