Two Bottles Seckinger

From the Seckinger winery in the Pfalz, we are drinking a bottle of Nero 2021 and a bottle of Solera in Paradise, which contains more than one vintage.

Whether it’s a fox or a dog, that’s for everyone to decide (The label says fox or dog or fox or dog in german and of course, it’s a dog). Five dots are definitely visible, although a bit smaller than on the other Seckinger wines. Jonas, Phillip, and Lukas are still making wine in the Pfalz, which hasn’t changed since the last bottle here. The Nero is now available in both white and red, and today we are drinking the red version from 2021. The back of the label says Nouveau, but it contains no Gamay, only Spätburgunder, Pinot Noir that is. This undergoes spontaneous carbonic maceration, similar to Beaujolais, with intracellular fermentation in a stainless steel tank. The result is just over 10% alcohol in the bottle, making it a perfect wine for now when the sun turns the attic into a sauna again. The Solera in Paradise started with a forgotten barrel of Weissburgunder, Pinot Blanc. Due to a lack of refilling, yeast formed on top the wine. To save the wine, the trio refilled it in a Solera style with the next vintage, so this bottle now contains wine from vintages 2018 to 2021.

Since dinner is already on the table, we start with red. There’s pasta with red sauce, and it’s a heavenly combination. The wine is likely at the perfect drinking temperature, somewhere between fridge and room temperature. There’s cherry, a bit of funk, some reduction, and a lot of freshness. I repeat myself, but with red pasta, this is damn delicious. And with that, the wine fulfills all its intended purposes.

Solo, without food, there’s a hint of lacto-fermented radish on the nose. Interestingly, this lactic note wasn’t there with the food. Now it dominates the glass but dissipates quickly. Then the cherry returns, along with some smoke and more red berries. And far in the background, there are hints of green pepper and sandalwood. There’s practically no tannin in the wine, and there’s hardly any resistance at all. You just drink it away, in big, no, very big gulps. With air, more spice comes through. It’s nice like that, but it was amazing with the pasta.

Day two continues with the same meaty, lactic, fruity profile. Practically unchanged. The “we don’t drink wine that’s just tasty” faction should brace themselves because this is very, very tasty. You just have to not be too allergic to funk in your wine, because it is a bit wild. Somehow a summer wine, even though we don’t have summer yet.

The Solera is quite a change of pace. Very nutty on the nose, a bit of lemongrass, and also wild, but in a different way. There’s a lot of structure and everything is very dense. At first, there’s not much fruit to be found. It could actually be a lot of different grape varieties. The bottle says white wine cuvée, not Weissburgunder, but I don’t know if that’s just due to the production method and if it is actually a pure Weissburgunder. Here, winemaking outweighs the grape variety and the origin. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. And the vintages blur everything further when more of them are mixed together in the barrel. Just as structured as on the nose, it continues on the palate. The acidity skirts past the edge of roughness, has a lot of bite, and pulls right through the texture. It needs a bit of time, in the glass and for the drinker.

And here too, surprisingly little changes overnight. In this case, for me, it’s a positive because what teeters on the edge of sourness often drifts towards kombucha that was forgotten in the kitchen for four months by the better half. Here, it doesn’t. I love how the wine smells. This nuttiness combined with freshness, a bit of tea against the common cold, a bit of citrus. Maybe it’s a touch creamier than the first evening. But then the wine grabs so strongly at the back of the palate that any creaminess is immediately forgotten. It’s extremely exciting. But the last glass of the evening is again the Nero.

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