Most of the time when we go out to dine at a restaurant we have no real problem choosing a wine, Both SWMBO and I are pretty relaxed and accepting of any wine as long as it’s not faulty, or showing nasties such as brett. Occasionally it is a challenge, as some wines hare scary because of the unknown. They invite you in for several reasons, but you know they may not give that much enjoyment in the final analysis.
So it was at a newish and exciting eatery, serving delicious food, but with a limited wine list. The wine list was well chosen in many respects and indeed was interesting. We were there with the I-Spy Man, the Plate-Licker, and their two daughters Hex-Bex and Jemma Dilemma. And there was a dilemma: Did we want to have an ‘orange wine’ from a reputable producer, of play it safe? We took the latter course, picking the 2015 Hugel ‘Gentil’ Alsace. A bit of a ‘bitser’ of a wine with Sylvaner, Pinot Blanc, along with the noble Gewurztraminer, Riesling and Muscat. A dry wine at 4 g/L RS, but the overall nature is indeed ‘gentle’. Soft and subtle, with an inkling of all the noble varieties, but evened out by the more settling Pinot Blanc, but with enough gutsiness from the Sylvaner. The latter variety can be prone to coarseness, but handled by the venerable Hugel firm, in this wine it is quite ‘gentile’.
In some ways, it reminded us of Jemma Dilemma, with a strength and boldness of character. Out there for sure, but never coarse. A little underlying spice and fire (the Gewurz), with the enthusiasm and energy of youth (the Riesling), and an engaging, up-front friendliness (the Muscat). The wine went down easily and was the right choice; it was a delicious treat. So we thought also of Jemma Dilemma. She was lovely, scintillating company, along with her sister Hex-Bex.