Palate fatigue

97867lWell it can’t really be palate fatigue, as I have been religiously not drinking Sunday to Thursday since the 28th September. But tonight, a major slap in the face; a massive reality check…an ice bucket challenge.

I received a text from Elodie saying tonight was choucroute night, and choucroute, as any good teutonic knight knows, means Riesling.

I knew what I wanted to drink was a Weinbach Riesling from Alsace, but as the afternoon wore on, and it was wearing, I just could not be bothered to spark up the car and drive into Dijon to pick up a bottle. After all, I had some JJ Prüm in the cellar, and you don’t get much more Riesling than JJ Prüm.

But mine was Spätlese, and the last I had drunk was lowly Kabinett. Could it be so different? Surely it was just going to be off dry.

But Nein! Nein, Spälese is a whole different kettle of fish. Even at eight years old, this wine was so bold, so bruising that it put all my assumptions to bed. I am living an existential crisis.

Not only did I not particularly enjoy my glass of Auslese (and every épicurean worth his Malden salt knows that Riesling is the zenith of wine aesthetism), but I now have absolutely no idea with what I could possibly drink this wine.

Mercifully, I still have five bottles left, but there is no point in even looking at one before another ten years. Gaspard will be eighteen; Célestine 28. I will be 56, almost 57.

It will be fine, very fine, somewhere, someday. But tonight I feel condemned, condemned to the pedestrian parmeters of delineated, dry white wine.

Donner und blitzen!


Addenda: This said, 24 hours later as an apéritif, this was a delight: a slightly rich but not unctuous mouthful of fruit, with a heavenly acidity and amazing length. Existential crisis over.

So, when in Coucroute, drink Alsace.

About matthewhayesbrognon

Wine Merchant
This entry was posted in VF - Pour encourager les autres. Bookmark the permalink.

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