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Ansgar Clüsserath - Steinreich Riesling Trocken 2017

$48.00
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Regular price $48.00

This wine undergoes slow, natural fermentation in large casks. Pristine Mosel Riesling grapes and lees contact make for a mealy, creamy-textured wine with ripe notes of peach with citrus fruit and a dry, stony finish.

Weingut Ansgar Clüsserath in Trittenheim on the Mosel has been owned and operated by the family since its founding in 1670. In charge of winemaking these days is Ansgar Clüsserath’s daughter Eva, who happens to be married to 2014 Gault Millau Winemaker of the Year, Philipp Wittmann. Like Rheinhessen superstar Wittmann, Eva is a member of Germany’s new generation of winegrowers committed to traditional, ecologically sound viticultural practices.

Some 97% of the vineyards are planted to Riesling. The Clüsseraths emphasise canopy management for fruit health and ripeness, and harvest all grapes by hand in several stages. Between crushing and pressing, the grapes are left on skins for up to 48 hours. The cool, damp cellar is the ideal setting for its 50-year-old Fuder, the traditional round-bellied, 1000-litre casks in which the must undergoes a slow, natural fermentation. Afterwards the wines are left on lees, receiving no treatment other than a single filtration prior to bottling.

VARIETY

Riesling is a white grape variety which originated in the Rhein region in Germany. Riesling is an aromatic grape variety displaying flowery, almost perfumed, aromas as well as high acidity. It is used to make dry, semi-sweet, sweet, and sparkling  white wines. Riesling wines are usually varietally pure and are seldom oaked. As of 2004, Riesling was estimated to be the world's 20th most grown variety at 48,700 hectares, but in terms of importance for quality wines, it is usually included in the "top three" white wine varieties together with chardonnay and sauvignon blanc. Riesling is a variety which is highly "terroir-expressive", meaning that the character of Riesling wines is greatly influenced by the wine's place of origin.

In cool climates (such as many German wine regions), Riesling wines tend to exhibit apple and tree fruit notes with noticeable levels of acidity that are sometimes balanced with residual sugar. A late-ripening variety that can develop more citrus and peach notes is grown in warmer climates (such as Alsaçe and parts of Austria). In Australia, Riesling is often noted for a characteristic lime note that tends to emerge in examples from the Clare Valley and Eden Valley in South Australia. Riesling's naturally high acidity and pronounced fruit flavours give wines made from the grape exceptional ageing potential, with well-made examples from favourable vintages often developing smokey, honey notes, and aged German Rieslings, in particular, taking on a "kerosene" character.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not bitter but rather have refreshing acidity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are very fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not have tannins but have lots of fruity flavours nor do they have extremely high acidity.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami rich foods where by it will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are very fruity but also have higher sweetness.

Wines that are just a touch off-dry like many Gewurztraminer or Riesling work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you should consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or a Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help balance out not just the acidity but to cut down the perception of fattiness in the seafood. 

This is why when you are having a piece of red meat that is high in fat, like lamb, then you should pair it with a Pinot Noir instead of a Merlot as a Pinot Noir will have a higher acidity and will help to balance out the dish.

 

 

These rules will help you with starting to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that are what need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that work well with cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity through a Pinot Noir. 

This wine undergoes slow, natural fermentation in large casks. Pristine Mosel Riesling grapes and lees contact make for a mealy, creamy-textured wine with ripe notes of peach with citrus fruit and a dry, stony finish.

Weingut Ansgar Clüsserath in Trittenheim on the Mosel has been owned and operated by the family since its founding in 1670. In charge of winemaking these days is Ansgar Clüsserath’s daughter Eva, who happens to be married to 2014 Gault Millau Winemaker of the Year, Philipp Wittmann. Like Rheinhessen superstar Wittmann, Eva is a member of Germany’s new generation of winegrowers committed to traditional, ecologically sound viticultural practices.

Some 97% of the vineyards are planted to Riesling. The Clüsseraths emphasise canopy management for fruit health and ripeness, and harvest all grapes by hand in several stages. Between crushing and pressing, the grapes are left on skins for up to 48 hours. The cool, damp cellar is the ideal setting for its 50-year-old Fuder, the traditional round-bellied, 1000-litre casks in which the must undergoes a slow, natural fermentation. Afterwards the wines are left on lees, receiving no treatment other than a single filtration prior to bottling.

VARIETY

Riesling is a white grape variety which originated in the Rhein region in Germany. Riesling is an aromatic grape variety displaying flowery, almost perfumed, aromas as well as high acidity. It is used to make dry, semi-sweet, sweet, and sparkling  white wines. Riesling wines are usually varietally pure and are seldom oaked. As of 2004, Riesling was estimated to be the world's 20th most grown variety at 48,700 hectares, but in terms of importance for quality wines, it is usually included in the "top three" white wine varieties together with chardonnay and sauvignon blanc. Riesling is a variety which is highly "terroir-expressive", meaning that the character of Riesling wines is greatly influenced by the wine's place of origin.

In cool climates (such as many German wine regions), Riesling wines tend to exhibit apple and tree fruit notes with noticeable levels of acidity that are sometimes balanced with residual sugar. A late-ripening variety that can develop more citrus and peach notes is grown in warmer climates (such as Alsaçe and parts of Austria). In Australia, Riesling is often noted for a characteristic lime note that tends to emerge in examples from the Clare Valley and Eden Valley in South Australia. Riesling's naturally high acidity and pronounced fruit flavours give wines made from the grape exceptional ageing potential, with well-made examples from favourable vintages often developing smokey, honey notes, and aged German Rieslings, in particular, taking on a "kerosene" character.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not bitter but rather have refreshing acidity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are very fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not have tannins but have lots of fruity flavours nor do they have extremely high acidity.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami rich foods where by it will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are very fruity but also have higher sweetness.

Wines that are just a touch off-dry like many Gewurztraminer or Riesling work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you should consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or a Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help balance out not just the acidity but to cut down the perception of fattiness in the seafood. 

This is why when you are having a piece of red meat that is high in fat, like lamb, then you should pair it with a Pinot Noir instead of a Merlot as a Pinot Noir will have a higher acidity and will help to balance out the dish.

 

 

These rules will help you with starting to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that are what need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that work well with cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity through a Pinot Noir.