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Essential Drinking

Winter's #1 Party Riesling

Winter's #1 Party Riesling

2012 Weingut Josef Leitz Dragonstone Riesling Photo courtesy of Leitz

2012 Weingut Josef Leitz Dragonstone Riesling: Because it pairs with such a vast array of foods, Riesling is one of the smartest wines to bring to a dinner party. This one, made by star winemaker Johannes Leitz in Germany's Rheingau region, is an especially good choice: It's a sophisticated single-vineyard bottling with precise mineral flavors, but it's also fruit-packed and just slightly off-dry, making it very easy to appreciate. The title translates the name of the Drachenstein vineyard in Rüdesheim, the source of the wine's grapes.

Drink It With: Almost any hors d'oeuvres, especially salty ones like like mini croque-monsieur bites, oyster tartlets and Thomas Keller's smoked salmon crisps.

Best Price Online: $14 at Satatoga Wine Exchange. (Find More Stores.)

Also Look For: Dönnhoff's 2012 Nahe Riesling, which is similarly excellent and well-priced.

Related: Best-Bet Riesling Pairings
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