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Wine and Food

Alexander van Dülmen

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California

Mayacamas, Cabernet Sauvignon, 1979

Mayacama, Cabernet Sauvignon, 1979, Red wine from USA

7,5 points

The first thing my friend Grant said was that he doesn’t really like Cabernet Sauvignon and, in particular, the ones from California. The second thing he did was to put a bottle of a Cabernet Sauvignon of Mayacamas on the table. When I saw the vintage, I piped down for a moment: 1979. He had opened the bottle some hours before, so it had enough time to breathe.

I have never had such an old American wine. I also think that Californian Cabernet Sauvignon is vastly overestimated and certainly much too expensive. Most of the time, these wines are too heavy, too fruity, too oaky – plump and show-off wines. Continue reading “Mayacamas, Cabernet Sauvignon, 1979”

Hinoki & The Bird, Restaurant, Century City, Los Angeles, USA

Hinoki & The Bird, Restaurant, Century City, Los Angeles, USA

4 points

Yes, there are good, nice and interesting restaurants in Los Angeles. Most of the better places which I know are conceptually offering rather fusions of different cuisines, pretty modern and experimental combinations. It is somehow funny that you can experience much more radicalism testing restaurants than discussing philosophical or political themes with people from Los Angeles. Either restaurants are just real American – most of them then are better steak houses and very much meat driven – or they are young, inspired and of course trend following: if a steak could be green, those places would be the first ones offering it.

Continue reading “Hinoki & The Bird, Restaurant, Century City, Los Angeles, USA”

Newton, Chardonnay, 2007, Napa County

Newton, unfiltered Chardonnay, 2007, Napa County, white wine from the USA

5,5 points

What I really like about wine is the astounding variety. Each region and country has its own particular styles and types. For example, it’s impossible to find anything that really compares to a German Riesling – except perhaps a few select wines from Austria – but I guess everyone would agree that this is something typically German. Also some people like to find comparable to Barolo, which is in itself so strictly Piedmontese, and therefore so Italian. As a European, it is – due to our lack of knowledge – much more difficult to detect all of these differences when we speak of so-called “New World” wines. As soon as you leave the European continent, so-called “New World” wines are encountered much more often, for a variety of reasons: perhaps you are either in a “New World” country, like Australia – or a place where Australian wines are imported since it is either geographically closer and/or more reasonable due to clever marketing campaigns. German wines are not well exported! Firstly, because Germans like to drink their own wines and secondly, why work too hard if you already have your grateful costumers right around you. But also because there isn’t any special marketing or publicity campaign for German wine abroad. Chilean wine, for instance, is very popular in Poland and even there are, of course, great wines from Chile, while those you can get in a normal restaurant or in a supermarket are rather bad. But it is trendy.

I even don’t know if wines of California belong to wines of the “New World” officially, but I put them in this group!

Continue reading “Newton, Chardonnay, 2007, Napa County”

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