Saturday, September 12, 2009

A Perfect World In 10 Days

I read somewhere that the world was created in 7 our planned 7 days in the Black Forest were almost perfect...until rain was forecast for a couple of we asked if our room was available a little longer...and added 3 more. 10 days!!..the longest we have ever stayed at Gasthof Rebstock in Kappelrodeck-Waldulm.
Owner Karl Hodapp and his wife Sandra Stark run our favourite holiday place.....and they work VERY hard..believe me. Karl has a day off on Mondays..but then walks 15 kms to relax! After the first season with the terrace open....he has lost 4 kilos...another 10 years he reckons..then he will settle down and grow wine!!! No doubt that the kitchen staff work hard...but we only see the team in the restaurant....and Bettina, Claudi, Steffi, Ina & Moritz work long and hard..always a smile..even after 12 hours. At weekends they are on the go from 11 am to 11pm...and therefore earn their 3 days off every week. They even have to endure my humour...and a rapport makes every meal a pleasure..even before the food and wine.
Enjoy our on photos if you want the larger version.
Monday 31 August 2009
We arrived just after midday on short walk to inspect the grapes in the vineyard and to stretch the legs after the journey..unpack...and we were on vacation. As this is our 7th visit..we feel on holiday at once. The restaurant is closed on we decided on a place in Kappelrodeck...Prinzen's Restaurant.
It has been a warm day so we chose to sit in the garden area....a decision that got cooler as the evening wore on. The restaurant/hotel has business connection with the large wine grower Hex von Dasenstein (more later)....and I guess we were lucky that no coach load was arriving on that evening. The food was OK...although my fish in Black Forest ham...was more ham than fish..or so it seemed..too salty by far. My wife chose a Trout Blue......and as you can offered some amusement! The wine list of German wines was mainly Hex...a couple of bottles of Duijn Spätburgunder..but that was all. To go with the fish.. I chose a White Burgundy.
Etienne Sauzet Puligny Montrachet 2007
Burgundy, France
The grapes for this wine are picked from 7 different parcelles which are vinified separately and then blended. Delicate clean aroma.....perky citrus acidity..There is some oak in there..but very awkward at the moment...maybe a long open would help...I expected more from this top grower in a top vintage..but maybe time will show it better.
Points 16

Tuesday 1 September 2009
A glorious warm day....we drove the short distance to the Football Stadium..which is beautifully situated..then walked the path along the wife Eva interested in the plants and trees which have their descriptions attached.....the small park has a pond and the ducks were going about their business...then across to the other side of the Waldulmer MAIN STREET (5 strides)..up past the church and up a STEEP hill through the vineyards gleaming in the midday sun....a hat was necessary. The gorgeous view was payment and we sat munching our lunch. The rest of the day was spent recuperating..then it was down to dinner..and as the weather was still warm..we sat out on the terrace.
We tried tomato terrine (tomatoes grown next to the grapes)..and small portions of various starters...For the main course I had slices of Duck with a plum compote..and my wife chose a favourite of ours...the Quail...this time on a bed of Ratatouille. She said this was going to be a repeat order in the coming days..and I agreed (it was never to was not on the menu any more during our stay).

Chateau Monbousquet 2000
St. Emilion, Bordeaux
This estate was purchased in the 1990s by Gerard Perse, a wealthy businessman who made his fortune in hypermarkets in France.He has renovated the winery and has replanted the properties vineyards and initiated a policy of low-yield farming. The wines are usually highly rated.....
Decanted...deep, dark colour...very intense cedar nose..smoke..sweet fruit..a sign of a top vintage...mocha touch...perfect balance..tar and spices....the tannins sweetish...just about ready. 13.5% alcohol never noticeable...but if a wine is well never is.
Points 17.75

Wednesday 2 September 2009
With fine sunny weather...we drove through Sasbachwalden to the Schwarzwaldhochstrasse (Black Forest High Road)...the views from up there are wonderful....past the Mummelsee...but there were buses everywhere...this is a tourist favourite....then drove down at the next exit..back to Kappelrodeck.
The weather still we sat outside again on the beautiful terrace. My wife and I agreed we would both have fish and change in mid-channel so to speak. Our whole family is known to order then everybody tries everybody else's meal.... A goose liver starter on a bed of pasta filled with tomato was followed by Steinbeisser (Sea Wolf) cloaked in peasant bread...and Zander (Pike) with Scollops (Scallops) cloaked in Baden Ham with Steinpilzen (Porcini). As readers will know..I have been tasting quite a few Grüner Veltliner from Austria recently....and on the wine list was a 6 year-old doubt it was still on the list as no-one trusted to order. Their loss..MY GAIN.

Franz Hirtzberger Rotes Tor
Grüner Veltliner Smaragd 2003
Donau-Wachau, Austria
Yellow gold..ripe, mature smell...a slight touch of petroleum (we petrol station freaks love this) pepper...gorgeous flavour..layers of fruit on the palate..stones..spicy minerals..just so 'tight' edges..can't ask for more..and perfect with the meal. Enjoyable.
Points 18..yes EIGHTEEN..and one of those moments in your blogger's long career of everything being just PERFECT

Thursday 3 September 2009
Our usual short drive to Durbach..and a game of mini-golf...then a walk along the stream..this time visiting a hotel & restaurant called Rebstock (they are everywhere)...and we had a coffee before heading back 'home' to OUR Rebstock.

It had started to rain..but I managed a brisk 30 minute walk in the vineyards at the rear of the hotel to take some photos..the grapes look very healthy..and should be on a par with the Vintage 2007..and I always smile at the sight of tomatoes a few yards away..delicious there are too....then back into the village...and while my wife was at the hairdressers..I took more photos...I decided this holiday to click and may be a drag at times carrying my somewhat larger digi-camera...but back home you reap the rewards..
No way we could sit our usual table in the restaurant....
The wine list comprises of an extensive list of the 2000 Bordeaux vintage... and recent notes recommended this St. Julien...
Chateau Lagrange 2000
St.Julien, Bordeaux
Deep colour...long legs filling the glass..fat & rich on the liquorice flavour..lush palate...velvet feel but with a spice to well balanced...and again that classic top vintage impression...a 'modern' Bordeaux..maybe thicker fruit than the 'old-school- style....the Entrecôte steak the perfect match.
Points 17.5

Friday 4 September 2009
Rain....but I knew Sunday would be we extended our stay by 3 days....
I had also organized a surprise..our youngest daughter was coming down for 2 nights....she was due to arrive around 2 pm...I had to try to make sure we were back in the restaurant area around that journey to visit Achern..then some feeble excuse about feeling peckish...the rain helped as it was no pleasure we returned to the hotel..I ordered a soup and my wife a salad...I went off to the men's room..time 1.45pm..but this was an excuse so that I could call Katharina..she said she was in traffic and it would be an hour....just as I stopped talking to wife appeared..I had to make up a story about being called by a friend...and we returned to the table...Eva asked me to finish off her I ate slowly.....slowly...30 minutes passed and we chatted about everything... then after about 45 minutes I was running out of conversation topics..and was slowly..very slowly...finishing off the 2.45..the restaurant door behind me opened..I knew who had wife's eyes flashed to me..then back to the door....SURPRISE!!...I quickly admitted that the call before had been me calling are hard work.
A table for 3 in the restaurant that evening.......and finally a Pinot (you gotta agree...I have been very good so far). Katharina & myself exchanged main courses...the Duck..and a Veal Cutlet with Steinpilz (type of Mushroom.....)

Bernhard Huber 'Wildenstein' Spätburgunder 2005
Baden, Germany
The TOP wine from this property. Intense brambly slab of cherry..the last time I tasted this in May seemed more open..this time...maybe a decant should have been done..but I wanted it from the bottle....still a touch fiery..layers of fruit...a power wine on immense potential for a German red....this will age 10 years...I'll keep trying it as long as it's on the dedicated I am...
Points 17.75

Saturday 5 September 2009 we thought a drive in the car... a repeat journey to the Mummelsee...we got out..bought some Black Forest Ham...but with a mist over the was no pleasure to walk...remember this is high in the mountain..temperatures are much lower than where we stay. We decided to drive around..and seeing a road sign directing to Baiersbronn..I turned left..down long winding the Mecca of Baden's Gastronomy. Three top restaurants....Bareis (Michelin 2 stars)....Schlossberg (2 stars)..and Schwarzwaldstube (3 stars)...all within a few miles of each other.....there are Mercedes and Porsches everywhere....sell your soul and stay here for week! We never left the car...drove on to Freudenstadt...and decided to take a break for a snack. BIG MISTAKE. We went to a cafe in the main square....and managed to get a table across from the washrooms....Katharina ordered a coffee (a wise decision) ..I had a Potato Soup...and my wife chose a Gulasch Soup..presuming it would be home made...IT WASN'T..and it was the worst soup she had ever we shared my Potato Soup...She wanted to go to the washroom so took the two steps.... Now..regular users of Motorway Stopovers in Germany will know how the system put 50 cents into a slot..get a ticket..go through the 'gate'...which my wife did...Katharina and myself were highly we have never seen one in a cafe this far away from the motorway...the obvious reason is maybe to stop folks using the convenience and leaving the premises without buying. The ticket you get can be used when you buy food. All this is OK...if only the visitors to this cafe knew they had to pay....people were constantly returning to their table to get the appropriate coinage....and then the highlight..three elderly corpulent ladies to get in..have to pay we said...we were 2 yards of them returned to get some money..but they only had a one-Euro piece...this was placed in the 50 cent slot...a light shone from the machine...they pressed it once..then again..they were working on the principal that if you pay double the machine will spit out two tickets and the gate will revolve twice. Needless to say..nothing happened...they tried to force the gate....but it only half moved. My wife we heard on the other side...saying she would like to get out...and she managed to by-pass the gate...the 3 ladies were no way....eventually they got idea Katharina and myself were in tears..from laughing so much...we kept waiting for someone to appear and say..You are on 'Candid Camera!' all reminded me of a verse we sang as children..
Oh dear what can the matter be
Three old ladies stuck in the lavatory
They've been there from Monday to Saturday
Nobody knew they were there.

The sun had managed to peep it's head through the clouds and the Bad Peterstal-Griesbach area was very attractive as we drove by.
The evening started with Bettina (Snow White we call her) bringing a wine to the table..Hex von Dasenstein 1976..saying if it is was on the house...she opened it...and the colour was OK...brown rimmed...but the smell was strange...although it did improve..the taste reminded me of a dry port..caramel...this was a 'Spätlese'..a 'Trocken' would not have lasted this long Herr Hodapp told me a few days later....but not a wine I wanted all evening....
Anyway..I had decided on the Schneider
Bettina and Herr Hodapp had mentioned the day before that they had the Schneider 2007..I was sure I had drank it in May 2009...and I bet her a bottle of Riesling. Checking my blog on the net... I had been the Gantenbein 2007.
The food we chose was Quail cutlet and the Lamb in a coat of Goat's Cheese.

R & C Schneider Spätburgunder 2007
'Parzelle Schönenberg'
Baden, Germany
Thick cream...strong Raspberry...spicy and quite evolved....that's all you get....we were still laughing about the three ladies...
Points 17.25

Sunday 6 September 2009
Gorgeous weather a LONG walk through the vineyard (warm)..and then through the woods (cool)...and before Katharina set off back home..a light lunch on the terrace. As we sat and drank coffee..I divulged in a fine Havana cigar.
In the evening...Eva and I decided we would sit had cooled a little..and she chose the Grilled Local Trout..and I the Meeräsche (Grey Mullet).

Salwey Oberrotweiler Henkenberg Grauburgunder G.G.2007
Baden, Germany
The 2006 was the best Grau I have ever I was looking forward to the 2007. Fatter I think you could say...the bouquet of pears and quince...ripe fruit..slightly sweetish..sweet grapefruit seemed about right..and these wines show better next day....which doesn't help me...intense melons..and again that Restsüß of a Grosses Gewächs at the finish.
Points 17.5

Monday 7 September 2009
Woke up..and thought..we would have been packing today.....but now we have another 3 days! Wonderful feeling.The restaurant closes Monday (which you will know from the start of this mamoth post) we decided we would eat on our balcony. At breakfast I orderded the wine...popped it in our fridge..and we set off to visit the legendary 'Les Halles'. It has been a while..and back then there were small stalls everywhere..with wine and food. There are still shops with clothing...bakeries and some eateries....but the main area we wanted was now a 'Simply Supermarket'. We purchased some bread from a bakery....took ages to get out of Strassburg (red lights every three cars)..and went to the Supermarket in Achern..which we know well..they have an excellent range of fresh products..and bought some Serrano ham and a selection of cheeses.
DZ Danner Riesling Type 3 2007
Baden, Germany.
The property had to change their name...from Cristalin...I have been informed that pressure from a Champagne house was the reason...have they nothing else to do?
Alexander Danner is a young grower from Durbach...he ages his Riesling in oak. This had for me..that stomach churning acidity that never appeals. A touch of petroleum....earlier than most at this doubt from the oak influence....half a bottle was enough.It's all their for the future..minerals and back fruit..but as I say...hard work at the moment.
Points 15.5

The 'break' did us good..the next two days we really looked forward to the food again...our palates revived.

Tuesday 8 September 2009
A visit to a local wine merchant to purchase a few odd bottles...a Riesling was also obtained for that lost bet..and then through Bühl..a pleasant small town south of Baden-Baden. My body was just starting to appreciate the lazed and lazed all afternoon....until the phone rang and Rebstock owner..Karl Hodapp said he had 30 we sat on the terrace and chatted. What shall I drink tonight was one question...and as I send a glass of everything I drink into the kitchen for him to try...he ain't gonna give me bad information!
We sat outside..which was fine for the first course..and was not so fine as the main course arrived..the wine cooled as well....
Brunello di Montalcino
Tenuta Valdicava di Vincenzo Abbruzzese 2001
Riserva 'Madonna del piano'
Tuscany, Italy
Deep..with a trace of brown on the full of 'tears' doubt Madonna's at the thought of another 8 hour training session instead of growing old gracefully..oh no...this is the other Madonna....OK...the nose offered mixed berries..and some on the palate...the usual curranty flavour..soft, biting tannins...but well integrated into the earthy fruit. This was a 'yes, no, yes, no' wine for me.....I appreciate what it brings...but expect more for what you pay. Mr. Parker gives it 100 Points (he drinks too few Spätburgunder).. I would give it 93 if I used his it is...I will award it
17.5 Points

Wednesday 9 September 2009
Just drove around ....bought some apples by the roadside..visited the Waldulmer Winzergenossenschaft( Co-op)...bought some wine..actually...I had received a fax at dinner on Saturday from friend Volker..asking for 6 bottles...I took some more photos as I waiting for Eva to get ready..and saw that a small wedding party had arrived....the date had decided it..09.09.09. May the groom never forget his anniversary.

The weather had been great all day...and we risked the terrace again..a good choice...the evening sun going down..the cockerel disappearing into the darkness..we chose some highlights to eat...and a 'greeting' from the kitchen appeared (one of many over the ten days)..a favourite this time for my wife..a cucumber terrine.
What better way to finish than with a Spätburgunder..this wine I had enjoyed May 2008.
Bernhard Huber Hecklinger Schlossberg
'R' Reserve Spätburgunder 2005
Baden, Germany
This is next on the pecking list after the Wildenstein. The vines are betwen 20 & 40 years old. Spends 18 months in new oak. Dry cherries....earthiness...but with lovely ripe thick fruit...this is more forward than the 'Wildenstein'. The fruit was more raspberry on the palate..but that shows the complexity of the wine. Fruit driven....just about perfect...
Points 18

Not mentioned...but there are a selection of 'taster' desserts...small wife holds back with her food that she can try a few...I help out if I can....

Thursday 11 September 2009
Just before we left Herr Hodapp asked if I could come into the restaurant...he had a surprise. Hans-Bert Espe was paying a of the Shelter Winery...he kindly presented me with a bottle of the 2007 Vintage.....

and this is where the story ends................................


Anonymous said...

Great account of the holiday! Wish I could visit some of the places you mention.

Bob from Alberta.

Alexis said...

I think I know this place! :P Otherwise let me help you out with this one: Steinpilze = ceps! ;)
Grüße, Alex