My American wife (my only wife in fact) has converted me to the joys of Thanksgiving. It combines the feasting of Christmas without having to worry about what to buy Auntie Marianne. The best thing about it is the chance to drink lots of good wine. I suppose I should be helping to prop up the economy of my wife’s home state but it is so hard to get good affordable Californian wine over here so this year’s line-up is all European. You can see what we drank above. If you look carefully between the tops of the two German wines you will see a picture of me in all my velour-attired 70s pomp.
Krug Grande cuvée, NV – this was brought by one of my guests. What a treat! It’s been a long time since I drank really good champagne and I had forgotten quite how uncompromising some are. This is very very rich and toasty with an electric charge of acidity. It’s like a sparkling Meursault. I wish I’d kept it to drink slowly rather than shared it with everyone.
Dorsheimer Pittermännchen, Riesling Spätlese halbtrocken, Michael Schafer, 2006 – this one is starting to take on the secondary aromas associated with age. In fact it was a bit cheesy when I opened it but after a day open in the fridge it freshened up. Though basically dry (halbtrocken – means half dry), I thought that it might be a little sweet to go with turkey so opened this:
Schieferberg, Ernst Loosen, Dry Riesling, 2009 – after making this my wine of the week in February last year, my dear brother who lives in Australia bought me a case for my birthday. Thanks George! I was intending to keep some to see how it aged but now have only two bottles left. It’s even better than I remember – perhaps that’s the extra eight months ageing.
Bourgogne Rouge, Joseph Voillot, 2009 – this one was the star even in such distinguished company. For once when talking about a wine, words such as seductive, feminine and even (dread word!) sexy seem appropriate. Everyone took a sip, stopped talking and went ‘mmmm.’ It’s a little riper and fleshier than most ordinary burgundy. One of my guests drinks a lot of good claret and even he was impressed.
Churchill’s Late Bottled Vintage 2003 – last year when I opened the port everyone had a glass and it disappeared quickly. This year, what with drivers and pregnant people, very few people partook. I don’t want to go into details but I ended up having a little too much and started putting my views on contemporary art over rather forcefully. Still apparently drunken arguments are a traditional part of Thanksgiving.
The whites are things I had in my cellar (damp cupboard.) The Krug is widely available for lots of money, the port can be bought from From Vineyards Direct and the burgundy came from House of Townend though I can’t find it on their site.