Martha Clara Vineyards 2008 Riesling

Petrol — Rubber Tires — Kerosene — smells good in a bottle of  Riesling.  In my opinion.

I tasted this Martha Clara Vineyards 2008 Riesling ($18) with Martha Clara Vineyards winemaker, Juan  Micielli-Martinez when I was out for a visit.

My notes were short then, but Juan and I had a conversation about Riesling and more specifically about this Riesling.  There was this subtle yet noticeable aroma of petrol.

This aroma, petrol, or a rubber tire or even kerosene aroma, as some people call it differently, but it all is generally the same, is found in older, aged Riesling.  This is something that is sought after by wine geeks and enthusiasts and connoisseurs around the world.  Some may say that this petrol aroma is a sign that the Riesling will age well in early wines, or it has aged well in older wines.  It could be considered that a Riesling with Petrol is a well made wine.

Here is a quick, funny story about Riesling and rubber tires.  One time, at my parents house, there was a bottle of Cheatu St. Michele 1994 Riesling in their basement.  I  grabbed it and chilled it.  I could not wait to try it and see what was going on with it.  After a while when I pulled the cork and took a sniff in my glass, it stunk of rubber tires.  I thought it was bad — no good — that the wine was gone.  So I poured it down the drain.  Shortly after that, in a twitter conversation I soon learned my lesson.  That that aroma was supposed to be there.  That is a sign of a well aged wine.  I learned my lesson.

Juan gave me a bottle of this wine to explore further on my own and here is what I found:

On the nose I was getting some citrus, melon and tea leaves.  Some steel and saline like qualities.  There was some apple and pear with the slightest hint of petrol

When I tasted it, I was really digging it.  There was more notes of apple, melon and a little pineapple.  Pear, and grapefruit rounded out the mouth with a little splash of orange zest and pith.

This wine was hitting all the right buttons and was in my wheel house.  I was getting a bit of a green herbal or tea leaf note on the extended finish.

I have to tell you, if you have a few of these bottles around, hold on to them, they will age well according to Juan.  I am no expert on that, but I trust him and everything that I have learned about Riesling to this day points that in time this Riesling will be smelling like petro or rubber tires and that, my friends is a very good thing.

Note: This is sold out and is no longer available in the tasting room.

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About Michael Gorton, Jr.

I am a Licensed Funeral Director who is having a love affair with Long Island Wine and the people that make Long Island wine so special. I am married to my wife Melissa and live in Rocky Point. Our first son Gabriel Noel was born on July 27, 2010. We have three cats and one dog.
This entry was posted in 2008, Martha Clara, Riesling, Tasting. Bookmark the permalink.

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