Restaurant Reviews

The Wishing Well Eurotour: Class Three

March 8, 2015

As The Wishing Well’s Eurotour continues along, we recently visited the regions of Germany and Austria to explore the great varietals they have to offer.

Wishing Well Saratoga Wine Class

Once again, the class consisted of 17 wines between Germany and Austria, and all were white, except for two delicious red wines.

I have to admit, I’m normally resistant to try a lot of German wines because I usually assume they’re going to be too sweet for my taste, but of course this class taught me to not make assumptions.

Some takeaways from this last class were:

  • German Law states that all wines need to indicate that they’re a 100% varietal. If it doesn’t say Riesling on the label, it doesn’t have any in it.
  • Top quality German Spatburgunder (Pinot Noir) is now emerging from various regions, particularly Baden, Pfalz and even the tiny Ahr Valley.
  • Two of the most famous names in German wine – the Rheingau wineries Schloss Johannisberg and Kloster Eberbach – were established as monasteries, and have been producing wine for almost 900 years.
  • There are 9 regions in Austria that make wine.
  • Officially, 35 grape varieties are permitted for use in Austrian quality wine, of which almost two-thirds are white wine varieties.
  • Other varieties that are important to Austrian wine include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Welschriesling and Pinot Blanc.

Here’s a look at the wines we tasted:


Dr Loosen “Dr L” Riesling Qba 2013, Mosel

Dr Wagner Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Kabinett 2013, Mosel

Dr Wagner Ockfener Bockstein Riesling Spatlese 2012, Mosel

Schloss Johannisberger Riesling Kabinett 2006, Rheingau

Schloss Johannisberger Riesling Spatlese 2006, Rheingau

Schloss Johannisberger Riesling Ertes Gewachs 2006, Rheingau

P.J. Valckenberg Gewurztraminer 2012, Pfalz

August Kesseler Spatburgunder 2010, Pfalz

JJ Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Auslese 2007, Mosel


Weingut Stadt Krems Gruner Veltliner 2013, Kremstal DAC

Fred Loimer “Langenlois” Gruner Veltliner 2013, Kamptal DAC

Weingut Prager Wachstum Bodenstein Gruner Veltliner Smaragd 2013, Wachau

Rudi Pichler Riesling Federspiel 2013, Wachau

Weingut Wieninger Bisamberg Wiener Gemischter Satz DAC, 2013, Vienna

Weingut Wieninger Rosengarti Alti Reben Gemischter Satz DAC, 2012, Vienna

Heinrich Blaufrankisch 2012, Neusiedlersee DAC, Burgenland

Heinrich Zweigelt 2009, Neusiedlersee DAC, Burgenland

And then, of course, there was the food.

The dinner began with a Pretzel Knoedel over braised red cabbage, with a sweet & sour sauce.

Wishing Well wine class

Wine class at The Wishing Well

The second course was a Flank Steak Rouladen, Dijon Potato Pancake, sauerkraut, pickle & spinach stuffing.

The Wishing Well Wine Class

The Wishing Well Wine Class

And finally for dessert, we had a Baked Apple Streusel, butter pecan ice cream, with salted caramel.

Wine Class at The Wishing Well

Wishing Well Wine Class

As always, I’m impressed with the effort and execution that Chef Longton is capable of achieving time after time. I also love having the opportunity to taste several different wines with food because I think it really teaches you a lot about each individual wine. Over time, you begin to understand what flavors work well together, and which flavors really ruin the taste of a wine.

Interested in participating in one of the next two classes? Visit their website or give them a call today to reserve your spot! 518.584.7640!

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