WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

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WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

Postby Bob Ross » Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:54 am

2005 Sawtooth Riesling Idaho. 12.5% alcohol; 475 cases. $10.99 at Chef Central, Paramus.

Pretty pale yellow color, clear hue, lovely pear aroma, good pear and melon taste, sweet impression, harsh on the edges, slightly bitter after taste which dissipated after 15 minutes in the glass, single note finish of some length. Mild acidity. The taste did not deliver on the promise of the aroma, but still quite a pleasant sipping wine for the price. 2*.

Winery Notes: Whole cluster pressed, fermented cool to preserve the fruit characteristics. Fermentation was stopped with slight residual sugar making awine that has intense fruit and a nice balance of acidity. http://www.sawtoothwinery.com/
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Re: WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

Postby Paul B. » Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:05 am

Bob, many thanks for posting this note. As you know, I love reading about wines from non-traditional viticultural areas.

A great surprise for me was had at our NiagaraCool this year. I tried two Rieslings from Kentucky, which frankly I would have thought not to be a particularly Riesling-amenable terroir. The Lovers' Leaap Riesling was far and away the better of the two; the other one (notes not near me at the moment) was flabby and weird IMO. But the LL, which was off-dry, was in every respect an excellent Riesling with definition. I was impressed.
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Re: WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

Postby Jenise » Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:18 am

Idaho being right next door, these wines are all over the place here and I've tried several. Unfortunately, I've found all the wines strange--some varietal character but always with some non-grape additives of the motor oil and plastic shower curtain variety. I can't figure at all what they're trying to do--but they do seem to be trying real hard. It's almost as if they don't know what real good wine tastes like, so they're shooting in the dark.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

Postby Paul B. » Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:23 am

Jenise wrote:I've found all the wines strange--some varietal character but always with some non-grape additives of the motor oil and plastic shower curtain variety.

Jenise, I don't have any way of knowing what the case in this particular wine is, but I have seen some small wineries using polyurethane (plastic) containers for long-term storage of wine, and I personally would be extremely hesitant to do this for fear of some sort of compounds being leached out by the alcohol over time. Maybe a chemist can chime in to say whether that would even be possible - but I can say that I've picked up vinyl in some wines and have always casually attributed it to that.

I, for example, only use plastic buckets for the crush and ferment stage of my homemade wines; after about 4 days, I transfer the fermenting must to glass carboys. I also store my wines in bulk in glass for the cold-stabilization period, and bottle them in glass. I have never once encountered any off odours in any of them.
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Re: WTN: Sawtooth Riesling Idaho.

Postby Bob Ross » Thu Aug 10, 2006 12:17 pm

"Unfortunately, I've found all the wines strange--some varietal character but always with some non-grape additives of the motor oil and plastic shower curtain variety."

That's a good description, Jenise, of the harshness on the edges and in the finish that I tried to describe. I wondered if their technique for stopping fermentation might cause that flavor.

I would like them to succeed -- the sites are so beautiful and so high. Idaho wines are not very common in this area and it's fun to encourage imaginative retailers like Chef Central to bring in new, small production wines.

Thanks for nailing an accurate descriptor of the harsh notes I found.

Regards, Bob
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