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Jun 30

Weingut Affentaler Riesling (or the Purple Monkey)

First off, let me state that we received a bunch of sample Rieslings from "Destination Riesling" in New York in the hopes we’d get around to reviewing them. Since it’s summer, and I prefer whites in summer, and we love German Riesling in this house, well, reviewing isn’t going to be a hardship.

We started with the coolest bottle in the box: a 2006 Riesling Trocken (dry) from Weingut Affentaler near Baden, Germany. Why was it the coolest bottle? It has an embossed, hand-painted purple monkey, complete with fingers, toes, and tail. I commented that even if I hated the wine, I’m keeping the bottle forever. It’s incredibly cool. The other thing we noticed the minute we took the bottle from the box was the sediment. I’ve never seen such a large amount of sediment in a Riesling. Between the monkey and the sediment, I had to make a little movie to show you, so here it is, with a caveat.

Caveat: I’m bad at filming and just playing with iMovie for the first time. I suspect my videos will progressively improve.

The materials we received show that this Purple Monkey is available for around $14.99 and imported by Niche Import, Co. Is it available around here? I’m not sure, but I doubt it. I hope I’d have noticed the monkey.

We chilled the wine, as one is wont to do with whites. But I actually preferred this wine as it warmed up a bit. The aroma was pungent, laced with petrol and green apple. The taste, while chilled, was extremely acidic with a really tart finish. The green apple trumped all other flavors. At this point, Kevin was kind of ho-hum on the wine.

Then it warmed up a bit. Once some of the chill wore off, the wine opened up. The acidity seemed a bit more controlled, and a lot of citrus started to peek through. In particular, I noticed orange peel and lemon.

We drank this wine as a standalone, but I suspect it would improve even more with food. The acidity would cut through a spicy or fatty dish with ease. The wine itself is filling; while not heavy exactly, it’s not a light easy wine either. It’s definitely got a bit of fullness to it, filling your entire mouth.

We both gave this wine a , but I suspect our "score" might improve by pairing this with food or even, perhaps, aging the wine a bit longer.

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Posted by Michelle at 7:00 am in Tastings, Wine Notes | Permalink | Comments (4)

4 Responses to “Weingut Affentaler Riesling (or the Purple Monkey)”

  1. Don W says:

    The blue (dry) “monkey” Riesling is not available in Ohio, at least it wasn’t last year when I was still in the business.
    However, there is essentially a QbA available, along with a delightful Spatburgunder. Your local fine wine shop should be able to order them from Bowling Green Beverage.

  2. Pete & Jean says:

    We lived in Baden-Baden for two years and this is very good Riesling. Affentaler is mostly a regional German winery and has been around for 100 years. Although expensive, their ice wine is to die for.

  3. Pete & Jean says:

    We lived in Baden-Baden for two years and this is very good Riesling. Affentaler is mostly a regional German winery and has been around for 100 years. Although expensive, their ice wine is to die for.

  4. Diana Carter says:


    I am an employee here at Niche Import Co. and I would love to help you find Affentaler Dry Riesling at your nearest liquor store. Please feel free to contact me at dcarter@ourniche.com

    Hope this helps!

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