Ignaz Niedrist Südtirol Kalterersee Auslese
Varietal: Kalterersee (AKA Trollinger, Vernatsch, or Schiava)
Region: Südtirol/Alto Adige, Italy
Retailer: Esters Wine Shop & Bar
Last week I had a meeting on the west side and decided to make a day of it considering I was not chained to my desk on the east side. I finally visited Esters in Santa Monica, which may or may not be heaven on Earth. I love that it's a wine shop and bar. With excellent selections for wine by the bottle and glass, as well as a lovely menu perfect for habitual snackers such as myself, it was the best place ever to have a "Hey! I'm a lady who takes meetings!" lunch to herself.
I had the pleasure of meeting the ladies of Esters, including Kelly who recommended this wine to me after I told her I was into "funky shit". She said something along the lines of, "How about an Italian wine that's German but not?" and I said, "What? YES."
And so here we are, with the Niedrist Südtirol. Real quick: Südtirol was a part of Austria and then it became a part of Italy and became Alto Aldige and now it is an autonomous state. So German verbage but Italian wine. Got it? Good.
The Niedrist is quenching my thirst for fall right now. I've been dying to have some hearty reds, break out oversized fuzzy sweaters and turn in for an early hibernation. Unfortunately, it's too damn hot for any of that. But drinking this wine and putting together a fall playlist feels as close to fall as I possibly could be right now. Listening to a mix of Fleet Foxes and Alex Bleeker & The Freaks along with this wine that tastes like crisp strawberries wrapped up in a big brown crunchy leaf, I could be somewhere else if I just keep my eyes closed long enough.
I just want to move to Big Sur and call it a day.
If you like the body of gamay but are looking for something with more fallish flavors to bite into, this is what you're looking for. With its vibrant cranberry color, mulled cherry spice palate and nutty finish, it throws itself towards tastes of Thanksgiving without the "YO I'M BLOATED GONNA GO UNBUTTON MY PANTS AND SLEEP ON THE FLOOR FOREVER" feeling.
I hate that feeling, but god damn what I would do JUST TO BE ABLE TO WEAR PANTS. I JUST WANT TO WEAR PANTS. AND MAYBE A JEAN JACKET. AND POSSIBLY GO TO AN APPLE ORCHARD OR DO SOME OTHER WILDLY FALL SHIT I DON'T GET TO DO IN LOS ANGELES. IS THAT SO MUCH TO ASK?!
Tasting Notes: Light body and fruit forward but with a smooth woody/tobacco quality to it that reminds me of the inside of a cigar humidifier. Complex in its youthfulness, this wine holds structure while still maintaining a sense of delicacy. Make sure to let it breathe a bit, it's bitter straight into the glass.
Ross Test: Not bad on the front but alcohol-heavy on the back end.