Greek fish stew with Riesling from the Nahe wine region

October 22, 2012

Greek fish stew

I love the recipes from Jamie Oliver. In his book: “Jamie does…”, the Aegean Kakavia, a Greek fish stew, is presented.

These days, as you know, there is some kind of weariness between Greek and German people because of the currency and bailout issues. So a Greek dish with a German wine seemed the right pairing; hinting at some kind of reconciliation or just because fish and Riesling harmonize so well?

I don’t know.

The recipe is dead simple. The beauty is that any fish will do. We had flounder and prawns. Chop some onions, tomatoes, garlic, celery and potatoes and cook it in some vegetable stock, with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. At the end add some fresh parsley and dill, and voilà, here we are.

2010 dry Riesling by Emrich-Schoenleber

I love Riesling and hold the wines made by Emrich-Schoenleber Estate in Monzingen, Nahe in high esteem. They remind me of my childhood and the time I spent with my maternal grandfather in Martinstein, just a couple of kilometres to the West.

This low alcohol (11.5%), bone dry Riesling is a fine specimen of what the Nahe wine region can produce. The wine is fresh and zesty, with intense lemon aromas, well balanced acidity and a long finish. I could have a bottle every day…but since I live in Bangkok, this is hardly possible. The more I treasure this fine Riesling wine.

If you happen to pass by the Nahe, visit the winery of the father and son vintner duo and enjoy a 250-year tradition of grape-growing and wine-making. The cellar door of the Emrich-Schoenleber family is a beautiful place to taste fine wines. You will not regret it.

The Nahe wine region: Schaefer-Froehlich Winery in Bockenau, Nahe

August 1, 2012

A vineyard in Bockenau, Nahe

Every year when we visit Germany in summer, we start our family vacation with a hearty breakfast in Bad Sobernheim, Nahe. We drive to this picturesque little town on the banks of the Nahe river right from Frankfurt airport.

After we have fortified ourselves, we usually pay a visit to one of the wineries in the vicinity. This year’s choice was the family winery of Schaefer-Froehlich in Bockenau, Nahe.

Regular readers of my blog know how fond I am of the Nahe wine region. Family tradition and my own history somehow tie me to this very diverse grape growing region. I nurture these emotional links through the enjoyment of the region’s excellent Riesling wines.

The Schaefer-Froehlich winery is highly decorated and its outstanding wines regularly win awards in national and international wine events. In 2010 Tim Froehlich was selected by Gault Millau as the wine-maker of the year. And Eichelmann awarded it the winery-of-the-year award in 2011.

The entrance to the vintner’s house

I called the winery to make sure that someone was there to receive us. Very often I just go and take my chances. It was good that I called, the voice on the other side told me that they were very busy with the bottling of the last vintage, and that it was not a good time to visit. But I was able to convince the person to welcome us since we came from far away and because we would not stay long.

Bottling in full swing at Schaefer-Froehlich winery

We were received by Nicole Froehlich. She led us to the cosy tasting room up on the first floor, where we started right away with serious business. Wine tasting so early in the morning has its challenges.

Nicole Froehlich introducing the wines

I did not want to waste the host’s time and overstay our welcome. Therefore I restricted the tasting to two wines only, both dry Riesling wines, one grown on volcanic soil, the other one on slate. Both are excellent wines, young and exhilarating with aging potential and great character. This is Riesling as I like it.

The two dry Riesling wines by Schaefer-Froehlich

Interestingly enough the volcanic one appealed to me more than the Riesling grown on slate, despite its greater complexity and finesse. My wife preferred the “slate Riesling”.

I wonder what the grand-cru wines are like when the “ordinary wines” of Schaefer-Froehlich are such delicacies. Guess what” I will tell you after my next visit to this wonderful place.

The wine tasting crew from down under

I highly recommend this winery, it’s wines are outstanding and service is just great. Please call them before you rock up.

Weingut Schäfer-Fröhlich
Schulstraße 6,
55595 Bockenau, Nahe
Tel.: +49 6758 6521
Fax: +49 6758 8794

Bleak arrival

March 15, 2009

I arrived from Bangkok on a bleak and cold morning in the middle of March. Three degrees Celsius but dry conditions, is what the pilot predicted. Well, what a chilly morning here in Frankfurt. Where was spring, I thought.


Nahe vineyards in March

I decided against the train, rented a car and drove off to the West. When passing the city of Mainz, I decided to go along the Nahe river, the birthplace of my father. It’s a lovely place. The Nahe is a little know German wine region. I will write a separate blog entry to tell you more about this jewel of a wine region. The Nahe region is very deer to me.

I passed the town of Bad Kreuznach but stopped in Bad Sobernheim. There a strolled through the small town just to move my legs little. It was 7 h in the morning, people were on their way to work. I was greeted by all the people I walked past. That’s the charm of those little German places.


Martinstein, river Nahe and vineyards in the back

I spent almost all my childhood holidays in the house of my grandfather in a small hamlet called Martinstein. Here the last vineyards are to be found. Further West are only rocks and forests. I paused and paid a visit to my grandparents grave. When overlooking the surrounding hills vivid memories of my youth danced before my inner eye. I remembered that my grandmother took me to fetch the milk and that I could never get enough from watching the cows and that I had to be taken by force to come home. I also remember rides on horse carts and later the first tractors.


The city of Kirn

My last stop was in Kirn, a small city and the birthplace of my father. This is a beer drinkers place since the famous Kirner Pils is (or was?) brewed here. I went to Dhauner Strasse to see the house were my father was born and where he grew up. From the castle, the Kyrburg, I took a good look around before heading through the mountains (where I found a lot of snow) to the Trier and the Mosel Valley.