2010 Steingarten Riesling by Jacob’s Creek

June 12, 2012

2010 Steingarten Riesling by Jacob’s Creek

The other day I picked up two bottles of Australian wine at Beijing International Airport. I was in transit and browsed through the duty free shops when I saw them. First I thought them a bit pricy, but then I decided to take two, one white, one red.

The white wine was a ‘2010 Steingarten Riesling’ by Jacob’s Creek. Some wine critics call this wine a ‘benchmark of Australian Riesling’.

Usually, I avoid buying Jacob’s Creek because my wife hates the brand. For her it stands for cheap mass-produced wine. During our time in Beijing in the early nineties there was only cheap Jacob’s Creek available in some selcted shops. Ever since she does not like the producer.

However, I had heard about “Steingarten”, maybe one of the best Riesling terroirs in Australia. And because I am still searching for my favourite Australian Riesling, I thought to give it a try. The original Steingarten vineyard is located at Trial Hill in the Eden Valley, South Australia.

“Steingarten” is German and means “garden full of stones”, but in the case of Jacob’s Creek its a brand name. The wine is “cool climate” and the grapes come from selected locations at higher altitudes of the Barossa Valley.

The bottle had even an individual number (I bought bottle number 22947); and it was low in alcohol (12.5 %). I paid about 25 EURO for it which is not cheap. In my native Mosel valley there is plenty of first class Riesling around for such a price.

The wine was not bad. It had the normal Riesling aromas (lime, citrus and green apple in this case), a solid structure, fine acidity and a good finish. However, I must be spoiled by the German kind of this wine so that also this one did not trigger my enthusiasm.

Needless to say, the search for an Australian Riesling which satisfies me is going on.

The bigger disappointment was to come: the food.

Of course we had the wine with food. Shakespearean cuisine was the go, which is a rather sweet affair with lots fo figs and raisin. Every individual dish tasted interesting. But we made a basic mistake: the various dishes did not harmonize at all with each other. I will just show some pictures and spare you the details of the dishes.

Here is what we had:

The fish

The raisins

Raisin-onion dish

Other veggies

…and the fish with jam


One of these days – food by phone

April 9, 2012

During the holidays there is always the odd day out where nobody wants to cook and/or prepare a meal but people are still hungry. The natural solution to such a challenge is: yes, right – food by phone.

We all know it, we all experienced it. Here in Bangkok, food by phone is well organized. We all craved for pizza, and pizza it was. Needless to say, it was a delicious pizza.

Pizza Margeritha, my favourite

From the super market, we brought home a bottle of ‘2009 Jacob’s Creek Shiraz’. According to the bottle, it had won a gold (in 2011) and a bronze medal (in 2010) at some wine competition. However, ever since our days in China (1990-96), my wife hates Jacob’s Creek wines, regardless what medals the wine has won.

Jacob’s Creek Shiraz

I did not let it breathe enough, I guess. But after “warming up” it was a very nice wine, with supple plum aromas, a good structure and a reasonable long finish.

I was very pleased with myself, that I had bought this wine despite the strong negative feelings my wife holds towards this brand, and anyway we needed a bottle of wine to go with the pizza.

Hurrah, we had a great dinner, and all four of us went to bed duly satisfied.