One of the things that bums me out about the US wine scene (for lack of a better term) is how so many people dislike riesling — or at least think they dislike it. But it’s really a wine that’s not well understood by many people, particularly in the US. I too have been guilty of this in the past. I attribute this misunderstanding mostly to domestic riesling. There are some good domestic rieslings, so I don’t want to paint in totally broad strokes, but there are plenty that leave something to be desired.
I’ve heard many consumers complain about American riesling being too sweet. But this is just an example of how many consumers don’t understand riesling. The problem isn’t necessarily the sweetness, it’s the fact that that sweetness isn’t balanced with acid. And let’s be clear, not all rieslings are sweet. Rieslings from any region can run the gamut from bone dry to syrupy sweet.
In my opinion, if you want to understand and appreciate riesling, you should really start with old world rieslings from Germany, Austria and the Alsace region of France. They just tend to be more consistently well balanced than many of their American counterparts. While some of these old world rieslings can get pricey, there are still plenty of great deals to be found. And that takes us to a German riesling called Fritz’s Riesling.
Fritz’s is a brand that produces one thing, riesling. And they offer just one riesling, Fritz’s Riesling. There aren’t six different versions of riesling available from Fritz’s, just one. And that’s all you need.
The color is light straw and it’s crystal clear. On the nose this wine has aromas of lemon, green apple, honeysuckle and flint. The floral honeysuckle and the flint are what really make this wine interesting. In the mouth it’s like a tart apple. It has a touch of sour and a touch of sweet at the same time. Apple flavors are the most prominent, but there’s also a touch of citrus and a touch of pear. The finish is clean and has a decent length. And most importantly, it’s well balanced.
This isn’t a riesling to tuck away in the cellar and age, but one to enjoy now. It may not be the absolute best old world riesling you’ll find, but it’s a very good one. And for the price, it’s even better. I would definitely recommend checking out this wine. In the coming days I’ll highlight some other good riesling to try.
Disclosure: This wine was received as a sample.