EP 804 2004 and 2006 Alsatian Riesling Tasting

Gary gets back to the Thunder Saddle after a very disappointing Jets loss. He tastes 2 vintages of Riesling from Alsace, a region that is underrepresented in many wine circles.

Wines tasted in this episode:

2006 Schlumberger Riesling Les Princes AbbesAlsace Riesling
2004 Leon Beyer Riesling Escaillers Alsace Riesling

Links mentioned in todays episode.

Latest Comment:

View More

luca bercelli


line of the day – ‘I reckon one day we’re going to have rock juice, because we want minerality in our bodies’

I actually laughed out loud at 17.21 – let’s face it, Gary is a funny guy

Tags: alsace, France, review, Video, white, wine, wines

Episodes >

  • Just Jack

    Moon cakes are the best. My wife is Vietnamese so I get them every year. I am partial to the chicken filling though.

  • Gubby

    QOTD: Sour beer (preferably a nice gueuze) with Roquefort and Humboldt Fog. Heavenly stuff.

  • BoozingIt

    My Favorite Non-Wine Pairing would be Bookers Bourbon with a Porterhouse Steak.

  • In n Out with any beverage is a winning combo, no doubt

  • LOL at the milk duds and cheese combo… my goodness! My mind is blown! Hahaha

  • maxinvegas

    I agree, I talk with quite a few Sommelier's on the strip and they buy their wine through work. The state of “wine shops” here is pretty bad unless you want to overpay for the big ticket Cali Cabs and 1er Cru Burgundies. Ever been to the grape at town square? That's where I work. If you are looking for certain bottles feel free to stop in and we can try to get the for you. Plus we a few bottles of Josmeyer riesling from 2001 chilled and ready to go. Its a great wine.

  • mikebest

    My favourite non-wine drink is beer. I suppose what you'd call craft beer but it's a bit different in England because of the way we make it (that flat warm stuff) I suppose that's the cliche impression that's out there but they make stunning, stunning stuff. The best beer you can get in England is on tap, it gets pulled anywhere from 3-6 pints of it, through a thin line by hand from a cellar. It has a head on it that is totally natural, but if done properly will stay longer than any artificial head so it will still be there even if it takes you twenty minutes to drink your pint. If you've never been to England and never been to a proper pub and had a real hand pulled pint, you're missing out. When you tap and vent a barrel in the cellar you have 3 days to sell it, anywhere between 9 and 18 gallons, if you dont you have to chuck it (if you're any good at least). But, if it's just on the brink and you know you can't sell it, you can put it in your steak and ale pie mix. Then of course you drink a new barrel with a proper steak pie, thick crust, lots of vegetables and a few pints of 'real ale' hand pulled, barrel conditioned, English ale (can't get it anywhere but here).

    Cheers Gary, great to get you back on the thundershow, thanks for still being an inspiration. I've never had Alsace Riesling but I have a 07 Trimbach Riesling in the cupboard but i'm saving it for a familt get together. I've had a few Gewurztraminers from Alsace and loved those, I'm only 20 though and I'm still working on my palate.

  • mikebest

    What do you mean the government controls it? I didn't realise Canada was a police state…

  • Just Jack

    Been there. Love the decor. The wine selection was not terribly deep but was interesting (I prefer it that way any day). Had some appetizers which were decent and well priced. Then we went to the cheeses. A couple of them weren't ripe at all. I mentioned it in passing (not in a complaining way) to some older guy with slicked back gray hair. He seemed to be in charge. He wasn't very friendly about the matter and got defensive. Other than that, everyone was very professional and helpful. I will definitely give it another go. If you work happy hour at all, I will stop by the next time I have to go to Fry's.

  • maxinvegas

    For that I apologize. Crazy things happen in restaurants, but as of late we do have some ripe cheeses in and have opened our wine list greatly in the last 3 months. Ask for me next time, I'm usually off Wendesday's and then Tuesday or Thursday.

  • Gary, you have been living in my computer for a while now yelling at me, so I guess it is time to finally say something back. I apologize for all the lurking, but hey I usually listen/watch you at the office and extra “commenting” time is hard to come by.

    I live in cold ol' Canada and we do have auto shop class up here.

    Food/non-Wine Beverage pairing: Balvenie Scotch (whatever year/ barrel I have around) and fine female partner. Maybe not food, but there is plenty of eating to be done. HA!

  • Just Jack

    I was raised in the restaurant biz so believe me I know. I never give up on a place after one try unless it is just horrible. On top of that it wasn't a bad experience, just not stellar. I will definitely be popping in to say hi soon! Do you work lunch or dinner?

  • I forgot to mention that I feel your pain with the Jets. I had a crushing defeat with my team in 2006, when my Edmonton Oilers (who are currently on one of the biggest losing streaks in NHL history currently) lost the Stanley Cup in game 7 of the finals. It hurts, and you will never get over it.

  • I must clarify that this is not a Canada “rule”; this is Quebec law. Things are different out here in the West.

  • I too like any kind of geuze lambic/sour wild ale with cheese. I wish there were more American brewers willing to experiment with this style.

  • I had a pairing when I was a kid. I don't know why, but I used to love Schwepps rasberry ginger ale with onion bagels and cream cheese.

  • Just Jack

    Well now that is a bit nasty, but you redeem yourself with the Balvenie. Balvenie Double Wood is my favorite scotch of all time, hands down. Unbelievably full flavored and crazy smooth at the same time.

  • maxinvegas

    Jack, I work nights. I look forward to seeing you!

  • (Andy) I love Diet Pepsi and buttered popcorn together. At the same time. You swish them in your mouth together and it's quite yummy. I just had the Dirler 2005 Pinot Gris from the Alsace that blew my socks off. I never knew Pinot Gris could be so sweet and viscous. Delicious! I have 2 bottles of Leon Beyer 2005 Riesling that I bought from City Vineyard here in Billings, MT that were on clearance for $4.99 each. I love clearance wine! They still have 2 cases if anyone is in the area.

  • PurpleGrillz

    YO Alsace is like Saberhagen in 80s, awesome on odd years, remember ODDLOT and CRAZY EDDIES?

    Gary- STOP apologizing for talking about football, it makes you look like a punk, be who you are. It is exactly what got you here.

    I love my Riesling from Unionville Vineyard right here in Jersey, support local wines!

  • angelatcarlson

    QOTD: Wow, it hard to narrow it down to just one, so here's a few:
    Steaming mug of flavorful, breakfast-style tea and a chocolate crossiant
    Juicy burger with the works and a Coke
    Good, cold Red Tail Ale and corn chips

  • steakmonster

    Too bad about the Jets, really wanted to see how far the beard would go.

    QOTD: There are 2 pairings I get very excited about. Alcoholic is gin and carrots, and non-alcoholic is Vernors ginger ale and bratwurst (the real german stuff)

  • Great to see you excited at the end…”enough to hit the nose on the head”.
    Be well and welcome back.

  • teckdeck2008

    Sorry about the loss, it was a hell of a game…I'll give you that.
    Qotd: My favorite pairing is shiner bock and medium spicy hot wings with ranch. The shiner bock is not uber heavy, yet it still has the weight to stand up to the spicyness of the hot wings. And the spicyness of the hotwings is perfectly counter balanced by the ranch and hops flavor from the beer. The other drink i love with almost any meal is whiskey old fashioned, although you could argue that since i eat it with almost any meal its not truly pairing…rather a drink i just enjoy a lot.

  • Brett


    You mention rock juice as a possible entrepreneurial venture. Have you considered non-alcoholic grape varietal juice (Vitis vinifera not labrusca)? A few years back I read in a wine magazine (~2006) that Disney World's Epcot was offering Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and I think Riesling grape juices to kids.

    I live in Salt Lake City and throw wine tastings. I'd like to invite several of my friends who don't drink for religious reasons but are curious when I describe the flavors of various wines to them. I've tried the Ariel brands and they taste pretty crappy. Perhaps you can make a non-alcoholic wine that actually tastes like wine.

    What do you think of this idea?

    BTW I feel you're pain, my heart was ripped out by Brett Favre AGAIN. Vikings should've won but they beat themselves.

  • Anonymous

    Dominus, Do you have any pics of your antique corkscrews?

  • Brett

    Crap forgot to answer your question. I like tea. Lapsang Souchong a big, robustly smoky tea (it IS dried over a pinewood fire). It goes well with irish cheddars or other strong foods.

    Since you like Scotch I have a drink for you. I call it the “Bloody Scotsman.”

    Mix 1-2 oz (depends on how strong you like it) of smoky/peaty scotch (i.e., Laphroaig, Ardbeg, Lagavulin 16yr) with 4 parts of bloody mary mix (homemade or store bought) and ice. Shake well, strain, and serve. It can also be stirred.

    Lemme know what you think. It'll help you get over that cold.

  • kevinkossowan

    I am a big Leon Beyer fan, and am so happy to see you enjoy the Ecaillers! I have an '02 Leon Beyer Comptes d'Eguisheim that I bought there that's set aside for a special day. Happily, I've had dozens of rieslings, having tasted around Alsace on two different trips. Domaine Weinbach and Leon Beyer rock my palate. Paul Zinck gets a nod for good QPR too. Alsace does riesling right, and I'm so happy to see you giving them props.

    Favorite non-wine pairing: apple juice and popcorn

  • bourgeoisbee

    Thanks for this show on my favorite white wine!

    Mini-QOTD: A former boss of mine turned me onto Alsatian wine and like I said Alsatian Rieslings have been my favorite white wine for a couple years now. I've probably tried a couple dozen. I would definitely be on board for some rock juice.

    QOTD: A Founders Centennial IPA and Tree Hugger sandwich (swap out the honey mustard for Dijon and make sure it's toasted) at Founders' taproom in Grand Rapids, MI. Put a visit on your bucket list (all their sandwiches & beers are outstanding).

    Rooted hard for the Jets, at least they weren't as sloppy as the Vikings.

  • JustinM

    Nice! There's some Raider Nation representation at Wine Library!

    My favorite beverage and food combo has to be either a Diet Dr. Pepper and Pepperoni Pizza or Pacifico Clara Cerveza & Fish Tacos.

  • robrx

    Mini- Many Alsation Reislings especially love Trimbach

    Genesse Cream Ale and Pizza–It started in college Genny cream (A PA local brew) was cheap and we were thirsty! What do college students eat? Pizza

  • Rich

    Gary, I wouldn't worry about the Jets losing, considering we lost both the Rams and the Raiders to St. Louis and Oakland within the same year. So a game or two, that'll be fine, but a team or two, eck, I'm still feeling the hurt and it's been 15 or so years.
    My first experience with Alsatian wine was back in 1991; one of my buddies opened a Zind Humbrecht Pinot d'Alsace (not sure of the year), and it tasted so crisp and fresh, and it was just so wonderful with a nose of apple and oranges all mixed up, beautiful flavors, and it had this really long finish. I was amazed that all of this came from a bottle that was so cheap. I was used to pricey over-oaked chardonnays from California at that time.
    QOTD: I didn't drink much of this when I was a little kid, but as I got older, I started drinking tea with Dim Sum, and now, I look forward to Puerh or Green tea everytime I have Chinese food, which is said to help with digestion. 😉

  • Gubby

    Lucky for me, I live close to Russian River Brewing which makes fantastic sour ales with varying flavor profiles. 🙂

  • kungfu_sage

    QOTD- pizza with root beer. I live in portland so I might get jumped dowtown for not saying an IPA, but you gotta love the classics.

    By the time I got to my highschool the auto shop was no longer there and in it's place was a weight room. I'm 23 though so only out of high school for about 5 years here in portland.

  • winelou

    Try the Abarbanel Reisling. I generally don't like the Abarbanel line, but the riesling is one of the few Kosher whites (in many, many tries) that I've ever liked.

  • Kevin Mack

    10+ alsatian rieslings

  • winelou

    Genny Cream Ale is made in Rochester NY. This is its fiftieth year — just like the Jets! A light, almost sweet beer, it is awesome on draft if you can find it.

  • Lsquared

    Earl Grey tea with Honey Bunches of Oats.

  • lawrenceleichtman

    Santa Fe Nut brown Ale with barbecue. Alsace has a prominent place in my cellar. Always 6-12 though I really like the Pinot Gris and Gewürtztraminer best.

  • robrx

    That's a reason to make a road trip to Rochester! That is the cool thing about the internet, you get autocorrection on anything you post.
    I have not seen Genny Cream since the Rutgers pubs closed when the NJ drinking age went up to 21. They always had it on tap. It was $2.50 a pitcher.

  • GV you're breaking my heart with how sad you are….wish things worked out better for the Jets last weekend. They had a great run and got much further than I think even you expected them to.

    It's funny how you wore the same shirt for back to back episodes….if we didn't all know better and with the playoff beard in the #803 vs not having one here one may have thought you taped them the same day.

    QOTD1: I can't recall having any Alsace Rieslings

    You talk about feeling old with the new Karate Kid….try this one on for size. If “Back to the Future” was made today….Marty McFly would have traveled back to 1980….let that one digest for a minute.

    QODT2: Great question, I drink more water than anything else, but that doesn't really count. One of my favorite non-wine food pairing is Coke (not Pepsi) with pizza. There is just something awesome for me that works with that, I prefer Coke with pizza even more than wine….and I know there are A LOT of “pizza wines” out there.

  • Wish things had worked out better for the Jets…your playoff beard has come off, and my recovery beard is coming off too. Didn't hear about the Karate Kid…I just watched a bit of it the other day on TV…when I took karate I got the “Daniel-san” treatment way too many times, btw.

    QOTD1: I probably have had at least 6 or 7 Alsatian Rieslings, though the better half sticks mostly with Mosel on the sweeter side.

    QOTD2: Favorite non-wine pairing? Beer…specifically Belgian (a dubbel perhaps) with pot of mussels, some steak, and some pommes frites.

  • jsstraub

    QOTD1: I have had between 25 to 30 Alsatian Rieslings, but most Alsatian whites are very interesting.

    QOTD2: A amber beer with spiced nuts is my favorite. Its best during football games.

  • jsstraub

    I have not seen Genny Cream ale since I left Michigan in '85. I drank a lot of that beer during though days.

  • QOTD Non-Wine: A good DARK porter beer (My favorite so far is Odell's Cutthroat Porter) with a medium-rare steak with a good amount of pepper and seasoning on the edges. It's my favorite paring yet!

  • hollisdevillo

    butterscotch brandy with peanut brittle

  • QOTD 1: I just had my first Alsace riesling (i'm seeking them out thx to you, GV) a few wks ago: '07 Trimbach Riesling. It was $17 – good, dry and crisp. I want to try the Zind-Humbrect next.

    QOTD 2: Fav non-alcohol beverage pairing: Diet Coke and Pizza.

  • wiljak

    Crushed rock juice…um, you mean mineral water???

  • LarryFitz51

    Coffee and donuts

  • DCaragher

    GV – I liked to shift in excitement, tough weekend, but “here we go again..” LOVE WHITESNAKE!

    QOTD: I love craft beers (Redhook esp.) with a good prime rib sandwich or their Long Hammer IPA with a buffalo chix pita wrap! “I gets excited about me food…”



Not Subscribed to WLTV yet?

Never miss an episode and get notifications on the hottest wine deals!

No thanks.