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Senior editor James Molesworth joined Wine Spectator in 1997. He reviews Bordeaux, the Loire, the Rhône, South Africa and New York's Finger Lakes.
James Molesworth

A Dry White to Set the Stage for Steak

Hermann J. Wiemer Riesling Finger Lakes Dry 2007

James Molesworth
Posted: September 2, 2009

Rothmann’s Steakhouse & Grill on 54th Street is one of the best steak houses in New York. It’s both old-school (clubby atmosphere and career waiters who always remember you) and modern (sharp wine list and superfresh food). While steak and red wine go hand in hand, I love the fact that you can get a glass of this Riesling—it’s one of the house pours.

Riesling sets the palate perfectly for a big steak dinner as the acidity really gets your mouth watering for a porterhouse or filet mignon. This wine, from one of the top producers in New York's Finger Lakes region, now has a touch of age on it, so it shows brioche and lemon zest notes along with its ripe pear and fig fruit flavors. It’s long and minerally on the finish—a textbook Riesling. I rated 88 points officially, and non-blind, it remains at this level.

A New York Riesling in a New York steak house: It fits the “buy local” trend and seems like such a good idea. I hope more places around town will serve Finger Lakes Riesling by the glass.

WineSpectator.com members: Read the original blind-tasting review for Hermann J. Wiemer Riesling Finger Lakes Dry 2007 (88, $18).

• Plus, get scores and tasting notes for more recently rated Finger Lakes Rieslings.

Chris A Elerick
Orlando, FL —  September 2, 2009 10:13am ET
james - great suggestion on starting a robust meal with a dry riesling. i prefer to start meals with a dry white, so we'll usually go with an unoaked chardonnay or even a brut champagne/sparkling. i'll give the riesling a try next time!
John Glumb
bloomington —  September 12, 2009 4:47pm ET
Bravo James,

In my recent visits to Rothmann's I've truly been befuddled as what wine to kick-start my evening. Lemon brioche beautifully illustrates this top notch riesling. I'm going to the store to buy this baby by the case.


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