TheWineRambler "A German wine label is one of the things life's too short for" - Kingsley Amis

Recent comments

  • Why I will never buy a Dell computer again   1 week 3 days ago

    Dell is a fraudulent company that cheats and lies to its customers. Here is my recent experience...

    My recent negative experience with Dell. I ordered a laptop to an address where I was visiting. The Fedex person tried to deliver but I wasn't there. Dell has a contract with Fedex where they can't drop off at the local Kinko's/Fedex. When I offered to pick it up from the Fedex warehouse, they say I must have a government ID where my address on the ID matches the delivery address!!

    I refused to accept the shipment and Dell wants to charge a 15% restocking fee! This is the very definition of an unethical business. It is only a matter of $30 or less. If it was, Costco or Nordstrom, they'd go out of their way to make it right for the customer. Apparently, at Dell, the motto is "we're right and the hell with the customer".

    Will never do business with Dell again and I recommend you do the same.

    I complained to BBB of Austin and after wasting 2 weeks of time, Dell representative responds with more nonnsense (see below).

    Boycott Dell and don't ever buy their products.

    "Dell globally requires a signature for the package and for Fraud reasons the name on the order needs to be verified against a government ID. As per Dell’s Terms and Conditions of Sale, Dell Financial Services will charge a restocking fee of 15% of the purchase price paid if it is not a direct result of Dell’s error. Returns for incorrect address or delivery refusal will result in a 15% restocking fee. Unfortunately, we are unable to process a full refund on the order."

  • Weingut Schnaitmann, Muskattrollinger Rosé, 2009   29 weeks 11 hours ago

    I brought this wonderful wine from Germany a few years ago and today I decided to open it and the cork looked great but when I tried to pull out it was dark and crumbled...
    It doesn't taste like vinegar but interesting taste...

  • A pain to drink: A review of Le Froglet wine-in-the-glass from Marks & Spencer   41 weeks 5 days ago

    Most people drink wine purely to get drunk and the fact wine tastes less like solvent than spirits and beer is an added bonus. As for the foil lid I am surprised it doesn't come with a straw. Long live all the wine snobs who insist on bottled wine, especially the ones who sleep on park benches.

  • Liebfraumilch Rheinhessen Qualitätswein   1 year 9 weeks ago

    William - most likely it isn't even drinkable any more, I am afraid. Only very few quality wines survive 40 years, and from the information provided it seems to me this one wasn't exactly a premium product even in the day.

  • Liebfraumilch Rheinhessen Qualitätswein   1 year 9 weeks ago

    1977 Liebfraumilch
    Bottled and shipped by
    A,Nollen Erben,Alf
    Imported by Ericka Imports,

  • Liebfraumilch Rheinhessen Qualitätswein   1 year 33 weeks ago

    Only a tiny proportion of wines get better with age. Even fewer improve over ten years or more. For a wine to still be great after 40 years it has to be stored very well - which I comment on in this case - and it has to have huge potential - which I don't think your wine ever had. To be honest, I'd be surprised if it is even still drinkable at this stage. Sorry!

  • Liebfraumilch Rheinhessen Qualitätswein   1 year 34 weeks ago

    WEINGROSSKELLEREIEN WALLDORF & CO BINGEN/RHEIN A. P. Nr. 434231501879 - product of GERMANY - white wine - Imported by Monarch wine co. inc. Brooklyn NY 11232 Permit N.Y. 1-205 Can someone explain this bottle of wine I found in a house that a 89 year old man was taken out of and put in a nursing home? He can not any longer speak and his wife has already passed and there is no children or relatives to contact. Is this bottle of wine worth anything? Or should I use it as a door stopper...?

  • Gold in them hills - 30 years of Tuscan Sangiovese with the Marchese de' Frescobaldi   2 years 3 weeks ago

    I have worked closely with the Marchesi for 15 years in selling his wines in the UK. Our great relationship has seen him visit some of our restaurants and conduct some of the finest tastings of his amazing wines. To buy these superb wines in the UK visit

  • Zehnthof Luckert, Müller-Thurgau trocken, 2011   2 years 13 weeks ago

    Oh, we are not snobbish about it at all. You may have seen from the link to Julian's article that we do investigate MT and have put some effort into making it more visible. I wasn't aware of Mayschoss - I think that may be worth checking out. Thank you for your comment and the suggestions!

  • Zehnthof Luckert, Müller-Thurgau trocken, 2011   2 years 13 weeks ago

    Don't be snobby if it comes to German Müller-Thurgau! MT has to be put into the category "simple but good".

    The reason that MT is so underrated may be that most of it is not planted in the best terroirs which are reserved for the Rieslings. MT is less demanding than Riesling, it is less sensitive to spring forst and so less risky.

    While it is being produced in all wine regions in Germany, one of the most popular Müller Thurgau's is the budget priced "Volkacher Kirchberg" from Franconia. It is a mass wine easily available. I like its specific nutmeg tone, which comes out best in the semisweet version. I find it too aromatic to go with fish, but it is a good food partner with traditional meat dishes like pork roasts.

    Similar to Rieslings, MT's can differ a lot depending on terroir and treatmant. Many MT are indeed boring. A completely different style of MT is presented by the Winzergenossenschaft Mayschoss from the Ahr valley. Their MT (called Rivaner) has lots of fruit, very fresh, straightforward with almost no nutmeg at all.

    The complicted name MT is widely replaced by the new naming "Rivaner" which stresses its resemblance to the Rieslig grape and has been introduced for marketing reasons.

  • Jakob Sebastian, Heimersheimer Berg, Spätburgunder Auslese trocken Alte Reben, 2006   2 years 13 weeks ago

    Living only 15 minutes away from the Ahr valley, this is the wine that I literally grew up with.

    Within this small region, the Heimersheimer Berg is a somewhat special terroir. It is situated in the eastern part of the region, not far away from the estuary of the Ahr into the Rhine. The soil of the Ahr is of vulcanic origin, with slate and grauwacke on the hillsides, but sand, loess and loam in the shallow terroirs near the small river. The Heimersheimer Berg, although a hillside terroir, is being described as dominated by loess and loam, and this makes a considerable difference to the more mineral terroirs that the Ahr is well-known for.

    As far as I know, the whole terroir is owned by only one winemaker - Jakob Sebastian from Rech, now owned by Christoph Sebastian - and so all of its wines carry the style and approach of this particular vitner.

    From my experience over a few decades, this winemaker always seems to focus on incorporating as much tannins as possible into the wines. When young, Jakob Sebastian red wines all make a fairly herb impression, but they loose that over a few years. While most Ahr wines are supposed to be drunken when young, it is a good idea to store Jakob Sebastin wines for a few years.

    The Heppinger Berg Pinot Noir which I had this evening is 6 years old now, and it seems to be at its best now. As most of the Ahr red wines, it is a light one. The Ahr valley is one of Europe's most northerly red wine regions, so don't compare its wines with French Pinots. But I think their lightness can disclose aspects of the Pinot Noir grape that many of the stronger French and other relatives may miss.

    I find the Heimersheimer Berg hard to come by. It is a strange crossbreed between an ambiguous Pinot Noir that focusses on complex aromas, and a pleasant, easy-drinking wine. It is quite fruity with a decent pinch of acidity. The bouquet is rather discreet, but I get cherry and mayby some dark fruits on the palate. I would rather not give a food recommendation as this wine stands for itself. Its aromas, its balance between lightness and "serious" approach makes it interesting enough to grant it the central role of a tasting experience. It is an elegant wine, just a little bit more refined than what you would expect from an everyday's food partner.

    While I can identify the Heimersheimer Berg as an Ahr wine I'd say it is not a typical one. Today, the Ahr valley is dominated by two winegrower's cooperatives, and three or four ambitious vitners who are out for Parker points. Beyond that, there are some less known vitners who simply provide good value for the money, and still follow their own way. The Heimersheimer Berg is a good example for such an approach.

    You may find the Heimersheimer Berg also being referred to as Heppinger Berg. The German wine rules are quite strict, and a few years ago, under miraculous circumstances, the former Heppinger Berg was renamed Heimerheimer Berg (both are neighboring villages). Jakob Sebastian missed the objection deadline, and they had to cope with the fact that their main product was re-branded against their will.

  • A taste of Chablis   2 years 23 weeks ago

    Interesting you said about Chablis. Like you, I recently found my favourite wine, which is of course Reisling from Germany and then discover Chablis, which is another favourite of mine.

    It seems to follow a derivation or slight divertion of taste from Reisling (in a good way).
    The next one i find also very light in the palate is Pouilly Fume from France. It reminds me of Chablis.

    I recently went to New York and tried the Californian Reisling. It tasted more like Chardonnay than the German Reisling. It surely tasted different.

  • Why I will never buy a Dell computer again   2 years 26 weeks ago

    I ordered a vizio 70 inch TV 2 weeks ago, and it's supposed to be here Monday. Today, which is Friday, 2 days away from the delivery date, my order was mysterious canceled. I called DELL AND after 40 minutes of wait time, and after a few runarounds after that, the rep said I have to pay more for it because they listed below margin on the day I ordered the TV. WTF? He actually tried really hard to sell it to me with the higher price, saying it's the cheapest price already, and still cheaper than Amazon...etc. Guess what? I found a cheaper one in my local Costco just today.

    I don't know how Dell could have fallen to this low, maybe it's this kind of frustrating and alienating their loyal customs that's brought them from their better years. And come to think of it, I actually spent more than $40k on Dell servers a few years back, and this is the kind of appreciation I get.

    Just so you all know, even if Amazon's Vizio is a little bit more expensive, I'd rather buy from them than Dell. Their customer service(not DELL's) is top notch and they'd honor my order in this situation. Good luck Dell, your days are numbered.

  • Schnaitmann, Fellbacher Lämmler, Lemberger GG, 2009   2 years 44 weeks ago

    I have run into a few of those myself, especially from Swabian producers. Overall I haven't found it a significant issue though, but it is always a question of sample size I guess. I am with you on careful barrique use though!

  • Why I will never buy a Dell computer again   2 years 44 weeks ago

    I never bought any other brand except Dell and its been about 10 years I am recommending people to buy Dell. Last month I bought two Alienware laptops and paid 4000$ AUD. One of them is leaking some white light from the corner of the display and now after 3 onsite repairs they offering me another repair offsite.
    Funny fact is on the second repair, they wanted to change the mother board to fix the display (this is were I totally lost my faith to the company).
    I am not gonna recommend Dell machines to anyone because its not fair to let anyone else to have the same experience. And I also we have recommend the company to change the brand from Dell to Hell,.

  • Schnaitmann, Fellbacher Lämmler, Lemberger GG, 2009   2 years 45 weeks ago

    I remember being pretty impressed by some of the Lembergers I tasted at a Grosses Gewächs release tasting a couple of years ago.

    There is, however, a familiar German red wine story. All too often the super premium wines are super oaky. The basic wines are generally more drinkable, somehow more honest without the oak schminke. Not just a Württemberg or a Lemberger (or even German) problem of course.

    I have to say I don't think these wines will age gracefully, the fruit falls apart and the oak never really integrates.

    Hello German wine makers, less barrique please.

  • German Gin, with Riesling? Ferdinand's Saar Dry Gin!   3 years 11 weeks ago

    Not only in Germany, it has also infected me here in London - although that would be easier to understand... I will check out the Schwarzwald Monkey!

  • German Gin, with Riesling? Ferdinand's Saar Dry Gin!   3 years 12 weeks ago

    Have a try of Monkey 47 from the Schwarzwald

    What's going on in Germany? They've evidentally all gone Gin mad...

  • Why I will never buy a Dell computer again   3 years 21 weeks ago

    It was literally shocking to read your experience with Dell computers. I agree to the fact that Dell was one of the best and most recommended PCs which gave excellent performances but it was disappointing to read about your complaints on Dell.

  • Schmitt's Kinder, Randersacker Sonnenstuhl, Silvaner Kabinett trocken, 2010   3 years 31 weeks ago

    Thanks for sharing your experience, Peter. I hadn't realised it is that close to Würzburg - makes it even more appealing to visit.

  • Schmitt's Kinder, Randersacker Sonnenstuhl, Silvaner Kabinett trocken, 2010   3 years 31 weeks ago

    Inspired by this comment, I recently paid Schmitt's Kinder a visit. It was well worth the walk from Wuerzburg to the other side of Randersacker.

    The winemaker is exceptionally friendly, and speaks perfect English. His father (the former winemaker, now retired) is also friendly, although he had to suffer through my terrible German, since he doesn't speak English.

    One interesting fact I learned while I was at the winery was that they no longer participate in the Fränkische Weinprämierung, which is why in recent years I have not seen any wines from Schmitt's Kinder appear in the catalogue of FWP gold medal winners. I assumed this was because they somehow had a bad couple of years, but that's not the case!

  • Bernhard Huber, Müller-Thurgau Trocken, 2011   3 years 34 weeks ago

    Yes, sad news indeed. If you are interested, here is the Decanter piece on Huber: I hope that, despite this, the Elternzeit in NZ is going well!

  • Bernhard Huber, Müller-Thurgau Trocken, 2011   3 years 34 weeks ago

    Oh man, I am in Elternzeit in NZ and so this news had passed me by. Really sad, I remember tasting through the Spätburgunder at the Mainzer Weinbörse, great great wines

  • London wine merchants: Philglas & Swiggot, a special wine shop in Battersea   3 years 35 weeks ago

    This is very much great and hope fully nice blog. Every body can easily found her need able information. I am visit first time but I fond many use full article. I will back again when get time.

  • Wine Murder Series - generate titles for your wine murder mystery novels   3 years 36 weeks ago

    very nice!

    also works in German:
    Das Riesling-Rätsel
    Die Suche nach dem Sauvignon
    Das Merlot-Mysterium
    Panik beim Pinot Grigio