Generation Riesling at Hambar

As a wine lover, I was very excited to be invited to the Generation Riesling tour stopping in Montreal at Hambar and organized by the German Wine Institute/Mainz. This great project showcases the ambitious younger generation assuming responsibility within the German wine industry, be it as wine-grower, managing director or winemaker at an estate, or at a cooperative or commercial winery. The age limit is 35.

Hambar - Menu

For this year's edition, Nadine Poss, Germany's current wine queen and Véronique Rivest guided us through 10 amazing wines. To survive this lunch, Hambar put together a 3-course service of Albacore Tuna, Spanish Chicken and Peach Panna Cotta.

Hambar - Albacore Tuna

It was my first time trying Hambar, located on McGill and replacing Cube (remember that place? so good!). The restaurant itself is lovely and I didn't know that they have a second level which is perfect for private events. However, most of the food was a complete miss. The appetizer was too salty and the main course was underseasoned. I did enjoy the Panna Cotta which was very refreshing and fun with the peach touch.

As for the wines:

Riesling Fritz Müller My opinion: Loved it! It's light and mineral. Wine geek: Simple gazeifation. Fun fact: Named Fritz Müller only because it sounds German. Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling Weingut Heitlinger Shiny River My opinion: Fresh and dry! It was my favorite Riesling. Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling Cliffhanger Mosel My opinion: I enjoyed it more at room temperature than very cold. Wine geek: 18g of sugar. Fun fact: This wine is produced by a young group to watch out for in the future!

Riesling Trocken Qba Winzerverein Ruppertsberg My opinion: I enjoyed it but it was my least favorite. It's a very complex riesling with spicy notes and it's on the dry side. Once again, enjoyed it more at room temperature. Wine geek: Produced in the south of Germany. Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling Fritz Müller My opinion: Loved it! It's light and mineral. Wine geek: Simple gasification. Fun fact: Named Fritz Müller only because it sounds German. Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling 50° G.H. von Mumm / Rheingau My opinion: Very fruity and acidic at the same time. Wine geek: Simple gazeifation. Fun fact: Named 50° because of where it's located. People wouldn't think you can actually make wine there. Not available at the SAQ.

Pinot Gris Meyer-Näkel & Klumpp Grauburgunder Hand in Hand My opinion: Very refreshing and the perfect mix of a dry and sweet wine. Fun fact: This wine is a collaboration explaining the Hand in Hand name. Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling Weingut Winter - Dittelsheimer Kalkstein 2012 My opinion: Pretty sweet. Not available at the SAQ.

Pinot Noir Weingut Ziereisen Tschuppen My opinion: Very earthy but not a fan. Not available at the SAQ.

Pinot Noir 2011 Weingut Friedrich Becker Spatburgunder Trocken My opinion: I could never tell it was a Pinot Noir. Not sure if that's good or bad? Not available at the SAQ.

Riesling 2011 Weingut Friedrich Becker Spatburgunder Trocken My opinion: Loved it! Sweet and mineral! Wine geek: It's a dessert Riesling! Not available at the SAQ.

And some more general fun facts about Germany and wines:

  • Zekt means bubbly
  • Germany has a lot of wine coops.
  • Rieslings are often paired with Asian food but it wasn't their initial purpose. This type of wine actually means to pair with anything, including German sausages!
  • Germany is the 3rd producer in the world of Pinot Noir, right after the United States and France. The Pinot family in general is growing up quickly in Germany.
  • Japan and China are very big German wine importers.
  • Rieslings can grow very very old: 20 to 30 years. If you want to invest in wine, don't forget about Riesling!

Thanks again to the German Wine Institute/Mainz for this great lunch, it was a pleasure to discover all these great wines and learn about the new generation in Germany.

Enjoy a glass of Riesling this summer!