I cannot overstate the impact of Selbach-Oster wines on my own understanding of wine, not just German wine, but wine. I had always loved German wines. Then I met Johannes Selbach and I understood German wines. So many of them operate like a Shakespearean play. That touch of sweetness and friendly fruit makes them pleasant for the novice or casual drinker. The deep minerality and profound expressions of terroir and their ability to age for decades, conspire to reward the serious and thoughtful drinker and collector of German wines.
One of the most thoughtful producers of Riesling on the planet is Mr. Johannes Selbach. His family has been producing wines in the picturesque Mosel region for more than 400 years. His wines have been on our list for the last two decades. When I teach classes on Riesling, I always use Selbach-Oster wines as a benchmark. They are textbook examples of what they are supposed to be and also some of the most beautiful and nuanced expressions of their type.
I first met Mr. Selbach at a luncheon he invited me to in New York, circa 1994. He had with him some very old Rieslings from his cellar. It was then my own passion for collecting and aging Riesling was born. Did you know that some Rieslings that seem slightly sweet when young, seem to dry as they age? Did you know that Riesling is the most soil conductive white grape? Did you know that Riesling from The Mosel can have a distinctive slate character that reminds one of being on a flagstone patio after a rainstorm, particularly an electrical storm? Did you know that, even though Riesling changes dramatically in the bottle from year to year, it can age for decades?
If you would like put a toe in the water of German Riesling, we probably have one of the best German and Austrian wine lists on the East Coast. Come in any time. They are also exceedingly reasonably priced.
Please come meet our friend Johannes Selbach on June 13. The menu is below. Reservations@StageLeft.com or 732-828-4444
Selbach Oster Dinner
June 13, 2016
Hors d'Oeuvres 6:30 Dinner at 7
A Walk-Around Tasting of New Releases
Soft Shell Crab
Riesling Kabinett “Zeltinger Sonnenuhr” 2014
Riesling Kabinett “Wehlener Sonnenuhr” 1992
Chicken and Rabbit Roulade
Pistachio, Vanilla, Carrots and Rabbit Mousse
Riesling “Anrecht” 2014
Riesling “Schmitt” 2014
Braised Short Rib and Roasted Maitake Mushroom
Australian Black Truffles and Marrow
Riesling Auslese “Bernkastler Badstubbe” 2014
Pistachio and Local Strawberry Tart
Riesling Auslese “Zeltinger Himmelreich” 2006
$139 per person
plus tax and service
Reservations@StageLeft.com or 732-828-4444