Christmas Giveaway: Sauska Tokaji

 

Because that’s what you do at Christmas, you give gifts to those you love! And I love all of you! This Christmas I’ve partnered with my friends at Sauska Wines (Sh-au-shka) to bring you an extra special Holiday treat.

Vinum Regum, Rex Vinorum, Wine of Kings, King of Wines

First of all, Hungarian wine is where it’s at. Their unique indigenous grapes make some seriously amazing wine[1]. And their Tokaji Aszú[2] wine specifically is OUT. OF. THIS. WORLD. So that’s why I want you to try some.

Head over to their Instagram account, follow them and you’ll be entered.

Head over to Instagram!

You have until Monday, December 26, 2016 at noon EST. A winner will be picked at random to receive a bottle of their delicious 2003 Tokaji Aszú, 6 puttonyos[3]. This wine is literally pure liquid gold. Notes of thick apricot and honey with a hint of vanilla. The desert wine to top all dessert wines. You may not want to share, although sharing is caring, and ‘tis the season.

Legend has it that Tokaj wine debuted on the world stage when Francis II Rákóczi, prince of Transylvania, gifted King Louis XIV of France with numerous bottles of wine from his Tokaj estate in 1703. When Tokaji wine was served at Versaille for the first time, King Louis XIV declared it “Vinum Regum, Rex Vinorum” or “Wine of Kings, King of Wines”.

Chateau de Versailles – Galerie des Glaces. #LivingRoomGoals

Merry Christmas Eve, Happy Chanukah, and Happy Christmas my friends! May your family be happy, your cookies delicious and your wine glass full!

Nature’s Refrigerator

Click to enter contest giveaway.

OPEN TO US RESIDENTS ONLY.

Lawyer Footnotes
[1] Like Kékfrankos, Furmint and Hárslevelű. More on those later, promise.
[2] Pronounced Toe-kai Ah-zoo. Still figuring this language out myself.
[3] Puttonyos is the unit given to indicate the level of sweetness of Tokaji wine. It was traditionally measured by the number of hods added to a barrel of wine. A hod is an antique grape picking bucket. Puttonyos are now measured in grams of residual sugar.

Riesling is My New Cabernet

Riesling

Well, maybe.

If you ask me what my favorite wine is, I’ll always answer Napa Valley Cabernet. Give it to me big, full and juicy and I’m a happy camper. Some argue that there are better wines in the world, and I’m not about to disagree, but everyone’s palate is different. I’m still exploring and figuring mine out, and if I’m in a pinch and just want some good wine, I’m usually not steered wrong with one of my favorite Napa fruit bombs.

That being said, since my real goal is to always experience different wines,[1] I’ve encountered a fair number of Rieslings in the last year that have been impeccable. They work as stand-alone drinkers, and pair exceptionally well with food as well[2]. Now, I’m not going for the super fruity sweet Rieslings that were popular with all my friends in college, but rather the more subdued, not so sugary varieties that have real body and character.

A few weeks ago[3] our Sommelier Wine Friend[4] brought over a bottle of 2012 Joh. Jos. Prüm Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett.

Riesling
2012 Joh. Jos. Prüm Graacher Himmelreich Riesling Kabinett

The sparkle hits you right away. Petrol and peach on the nose; amazingly silky mouthfeel with notes of peach, pineapple and green grass. Simply gorgeous. We served this as an appetizer, sans food, before Husband’s incredible dinner of braised short ribs[5] and duck fat potatoes[6].

Riesling
Riesling and Gourds … the perfect combination

So even though I’m still a huge fruit bomb fan, I’m seriously open to exploring more and more Rieslings, and this one was a winner. It retails throughout the country for around $26-30, and let me tell you, it’s well worth it.

J.J. Prüm is a seriously well-respected wine house. In 1911, Johann Josef Prüm began the estate and his son Sebastian joined him in 1920 when the first bottlings were released. JJ and Sebastian’s ancestors continue at the helm today; it is currently run by Sebastian’s son Dr. Manfred Prüm, and his granddaughter, Dr. Katharina Prüm. With an exclusive focus on Riesling, their 33.5 acres of vineyards produce some of Germany’s finest, and they have a long history of aging well. Their harvest tends to be late which gives the wine the ability to stand the test of time.

The wines are grown in Wehlen, a tiny village of about 1,300 residents in the heart of Mosel, one of Germany’s 13 wine regions, and perhaps its most prestigious. The Prüm vineyards are nestled along the Middle Mosselle, the central section of the Moselle River which runs through France, Luxembourg, and Germany.

Riesling Wine Cork
Cork Shot #forthewin

The sundial on the Prüm labels is a nod to the real life sundial which graces the face of their Sonnenuhr vineyard.

JJ's Sundial. Photo (c) courtesy of pop & pour
JJ’s Sundial. Photo (c) courtesy of pop & pour

New, crisp and interesting Rieslings will always be a hit, so this would be the perfect thing to bring to an intimate dinner party as an apertif or give as a gift. After all, #tistheseason.

Until the next glass, Cheers!

Lawyer Footnotes

[1] We are, after all, here for a limited period of time, and the wine selection possibilities are endless.
[2] See, i.e., Riesling is a Viable OptionHey, Can We BYOB?, and Indian & Riesling: Wining & Dining 101.
[3] Jeeze, time flies, huh?
[4] If you don’t have one of these wine friends, I’d highly recommend finding one. #WineFriendsForTheWin
[5] Which we paired with a big Napa fruit bomb. Obviously.
[6] #DietStartsMonday

Riesling Is a Viable Option

I’m usually not a big Riesling drinker. Maybe if someone is serving it with dessert I’ll have a small glass, but it’s not something I buy. It was always one of those wines that left a bad taste in my mind. I remember having it one night in college[1], and since my college budget didn’t allow for me to buy anything except a sugary bottle of what could only be called Riesling-esque juice, I wound up hungover not feeling well the next morning and swore it off for good.

Until, that is, I heard that it may be good with spicy foods[2]. And after having that sweet, delicious experience, it made me consider trying more of this lovely grape. So when I walked into one of my favorite wine shops last week and my best good wine friend mentioned a unique Riesling I might enjoy, I decided to give it another swirl.File Jul 22, 9 08 04 PM

Tasting Memo: 2015 Dönnhoff Riesling Trocken

Melon and honey on the nose. Wow. A lot of body; a great, full mouthfeel. I get the faintest fizzy pop of carbonation, not full blown bubbles, but just a hint[3]. It’s quite refreshing. Maybe a bit of green apple on the finish with a touch of a dry bite. Fruity without being sweet. A wonderfully delicious treat. I sipped on this without any food[4], and it was great on its own. I could also see pairing this with some apple slices slathered in Brie[5]. Yum. Goodbye to my Riesling prejudice, I think I’m officially a convert!

File Jul 22, 9 07 52 PMThe producer of this bottle is the highly esteemed Dönnhoff family who has been producing wine in the Nahe wine region of Germany for more than 200 years[6]. The estate is now run by father and son duo, Helmut and Cornelius. Their Riesling, Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc grapes are grown on twenty five sloping, hilly hectares in Oberhausen an der Nahe, a teenytiny wine growing village about an hour southwest of Frankfurt.

donnhoff2
(c) Weingutt Dönnhoff

As of 2013 there were a grand total of 379 full time residents in Oberhausen an der Nahe, the Dönnhoff family presumably being several of them. Eighty percent of their vines are Riesling, and this bottle was the Trocken, or dry offering. Made from 100% Riesling grapes, it was fermented in a mix of stainless steel and large German oak barrels.

File Jul 22, 9 07 34 PM

This may not be the easiest wine to find, but it is available throughout the US for, you guessed it, under $25 a bottle (this was my selection for the July edition of the #Under25Challenge[7]). I’d highly suggest trying to get your hands on some whether you’re a Riesling fan or even if you’re on the fence. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Salem liked it, so will you!
Salem liked it, so will you! #catlady

Until the next glass, cheers!

Lawyer Footnotes

[1] In my college quest to be, or at least appear to be, classy. Sometimes. #collegelife
[2] Thanks to my friends at Cutruzzola Vineyards.
[3] The winery calls this a “tingling minerality.”
[4] Don’t ask me why, this is very unlike me.
[5] Because how else does one eat apples?
[6] By the way, this place is going on the Wine Bucket List. It looks simply stunning.

donnhoff
(c) Weingutt Dönnhoff

[7] If you haven’t jumped on the #Under25Challenge bandwagon yet, you’re missing out on some fun. Find a new wine store, ask for a recommendation for their best bottle $25 or under, then open it up with us on Twitter. Check it out next month, August 16 at 8 pm EST. See you then!

File Jul 22, 9 10 34 PM
Liquid Courage and Provisions from the Wise Old Dog

#WineSquad: Animal Planet Division

I’ve got a wine squad. It’s made up of lawyers, distillers, teachers, singers, Twitter & Instagram friends, and international wine bloggers. We like wine. We roll deep. Or at least I thought we did, until I saw the wine squad from Vergenoegd Wine Estate. They’ve got me beat. By a lot. And they’re way cooler than my squad. #Ducks

ducks
(C) Vergenoegd Wine Estate