Hit & Miss: Cockfighter’s Ghost 2008 Riesling with Green Papaya Salad & Kerala Prawn Curry

Wine: Cockfighter’s Ghost 2008 Riesling
Origin:  Clare Valley, Australia

Taste: This classic Australian expression of Riesling offers an aromatic potpourri of lemon curd, white peach and verbena. Petrol notes accompany this flamboyant bouquet, betraying its otherwise youthful profile and showing its five years of evolution. Firm acidity creates a taut mouthfeel yet a whisper of glycerol prevents the palate from feeling overly austere.

Expectation: This bottling should compliment aromatic Thai and Indian dishes.

Hit: Green Papaya Salad
Several perfect complements occurred with this pairing. First, the salad’s lime juice really popped the Riesling’s citrus pith notes. Second, both the dish and the drink almost tingled with peppy acidity. Finally, the slightly tangy fruit of each also melded together very well.

Miss: Kerala Prawn Curry
This pairing wasn’t a disaster, but I would have preferred a Riesling with some residual sugar to texturally match the voluptuousness the coconut milk gives the curry. The contrasting mouthfeels made for a slightly disjointed match though the wine’s marked acidity certainly cleansed the palate. Also, though the 12.6% alcohol is quite low for a dry wine and well-integrated, it still emphasized the piquant spice just a bit too much.