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



Zehnthof Luckert, Sulzfelder Cyriakusberg, Silvaner Kabinett trocken, 2010

Posted by Torsten 04 Dec 2011

Buying clothes and shoes is a difficult business. Even if you happen to know what you want and even if the market agrees that you should want it and offers it to you, there is no guarantee it will fit. I cannot remember how often I have tried trousers or shoes of the size I have bought for years and continued to buy for years after - and the bastards won't fit. Like the EU size 46 trainers that my 43-44 size feet would not even get into. Producers apparently like to interpret size in line with changing fashion. This of course does not fit my modernist brain that believes a size is a size and not a fashion statement. Wine bottles are different though - a 750ml bottle will pretty much always fit your wine rack. Unless it is a Franconian Bocksbeutel, of course.

Admittedly, this is not very practical (and I wonder if there are Bocksbeutel racks for the serious collectors of Franconian wine), but to me it is a satisfying change from the norm, and as you get what it says on the label it is also honest. Like a good Franconian Silvaner should be.

Historically, by the way, Bocksbeutel-shaped bottles are neither a new invention (they go back to antiquity) nor were they unpractical - after all they won't roll away when used outdoors. I don't think this is why they are very popular in the Franconian wine growing region of Germany (northern Bavaria to be precise) today, but a Silvaner in a Bocksbeutel is about as Franconian as you can get.

And the 2010 Silvaner made by the Luckert family is a good showcase for Silvaner. It has a lovely floral, herbal and grassy nose, with a touch of spiciness, some crispy fried sage, yellow fruit and apple. It also drinks very well, non the least because of balanced acidity (which can be a problem in 2010) that adds citrus freshness to a surprisingly round and full mouth-feel for what is not a heavy wine (the wine has been matured on yeast in large wood barrels). It starts round on your tongue, then feels more creamy and juicy and ends surprisingly dry and chalky, with earthy mineral. Add to that a hint of orange and some nut and you get a reasonably priced Silvaner of more substance than the herbal bouquet would make you expect. How you fit it into your wine rack I leave to you to figure out.