My wife and I had a fun evening catching up with Tzora's Eran Pick and his wife at Bertie, where a well known local mystery was the backdrop of the conversation.
Weingut Wittman, Rheinhessen, Westhofener Aulerde, Großes Gewächs, Riesling , 2007
Since my experience with German Rieslings is basically limited to the Giaconda portfolio, I hesitate to generalize, but Rheinhessen seems to me to be the most mineral-laden of the major regions in Germany, and this Geology 101 exhibit would present solid (pun intended) proof of my conjecture. Other than that bedrock of minerals, it's very balanced and tasty and decently complex - not enough to truly captivate or throw into a swoon (probably because it's missing a sense of tension that it conveyed when it was younger), but an interesting companion to the food and conversation.
My wine. Giaconda, 260 NIS.
Domaine de l'Aurage, Cotes de Castillon, 2009
This is a side project owned by the Mitjavile family, owner of the well known and respected St. Emilion property Tetre Roteboeuf. The Merlot is very obvious here in this quite primary wine. Besides being a well-made wine (that is not over-ripe or over-extracted) and quite tasty, it sparks a fit of jealousy on my part: while I love the big names in Bordeaux, we all know how expensive they are. Yet in Israel we hardly ever get any relatively inexpensive wines from the lesser appellations from Bordeaux, and if we do, they are invariably Medocs or Bordeaux Superiors that are force fed to WineRoute by their negociants. This, on the other hand, is truly a good value if you can get it before the Chinese hear about it.
About 35 Euros. Eran's wine.