The SOMM Journal

August/September 2014

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50 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2014 Unvaryingly, the wines that failed to elicit little enthusiasm were those lacking a defini- tion of place, demonstrating that you can't simply "tag" a wine with minerality: It either tastes like the place or not. "Minerality is a term used very loosely in wine tasting, but it's simple: minerals are found in the soil that are transcribed via the wine," Michelle said. She cited the once- submerged Chablis for its sea elements and Etna for its smoky volcanic soil as prime examples of direct mineral-to-mouth—con - cepts that drinkers either don't know or don't understand. "A mineral is a naturally occurring sub - stance. That shouldn't be forgotten," she said. TOEING A MINERAL LINE Marqués de Casa Concha 2012 Chardonnay, Limarí, Chile ($16–18) Very technically made, carried by its high alcohol. Elena Walch 2012 Pinot Bianco Kastelaz, Alto Adige, Italy ($20) Its high acid reminded some of pineapple juice. Domaine Serge Laloue 2013 Sancerre, France ($22) Back to the drawing board: consistently misidentified by our panel. Gunderloch 2013 Riesling Trocken, Rheinhassen, Germany ($19.99) Expressing sulfur, but "good with potato chips," says Eduardo. St. Urbans-Hof 2012 Bockstein Riesling Kabinett, Saar, Germany ($22.99) "Flashily made" and sulfuric. S. A. Prüm 2007 Wehlener Sonnenuhr Old Vine Riesling, Mosel, Germany ($55) Botrytis, smoke, heavy-textured, not expressing enough acid. Christian Moreau 2010 Chablis, France ($27) The winner of the three from this producer. Christian Moreau 2008 Chablis Grand Cru Vaudésir, France ($81) Out of charac - ter, expressing prem-ox, funk. Christian Moreau 2011 Chablis Grand Cru Les Clos, France ($88) Fared better, tasted like Puligny-Montrachet or Meursault, but phenolic. Weinbach 2010 Riesling Schlossberg Cuvée Ste Catherine, Alsace, France ($36) Full-textured, overwhelming mouth - feel; somewhat disconnected. Santo Wine 2013 Assyrtiko, Santorini, Greece ($20) Smoky, bright, mouth-watering. The only wine all som - meliers agreed would make their list. Esporão 2013 Verdelho, Alentejo, Portugal ($12) Impressed for its creamy but bright palate. Orballo 2013 Albariño, Rías Baixas, Spain ($15) Clean, orchard fruit, lemon, CO2-driven: a patio wine. THE RESULTS BEST IN SHOW Aldo Sohm of Le Bernardin. Arnaud Tronche, partner in Racines. Thanks to Teuwen Communications for hosting the Quaff Report. Thanks to Benson Marketing, Cornerstone Communications, Creative Palate, New Wines of Greece, Palm Bay International, SOPEXA, Teuwen Communications, Frederick Wildman & Sons and Wines of Germany for providing submissions.

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