Sipping with Grace: A to Z Wineworks Riesling with tofu kimchi

A wine for those looking for an unrivaled sweet with a kick



This is the 2021 A to Z Wineworks Riesling with the tofu kimchi over rice.

JARED GRACE, Evergreen columnist

First of all, I would be remiss if I did not mention the label of this wine. Affectionately known as the “Beesling” — a Riesling with bees on the bottle — in our house, both my fiancée and I love this label.

A good label is always the first thing that draws me to a bottle of wine. My fiancée and I literally had to stop shopping and debate if we really needed more wine, but with this label, of course we did.

The 2021 A to Z Wineworks Riesling is composed of 100% Riesling grapes, an ABV (alcohol by volume) of 12% and has a flavor profile consisting of honeydew, apricot and peach. Finishing with notes of pear and apple, this wine leaves a naturally sweet taste in your mouth.

This Riesling, being from Oregon instead of Washington like the wines we usually talk about in this column, has a very different profile because of the climate.

The Portland, Oregon, area tends to be rainier and therefore less sunny than Washington. This makes their wines much more acidic than those here in the Columbia Valley or the Palouse.

This wine has a very high acid concentration, giving it a crisper mouthfeel and a slightly tart taste. Floral-toned aromas flood the senses as you smell this wine and give a refined complexity to its taste. A very light body makes a more refreshing taste very apparent, and in addition to everything else, leads to a pleasant drinking experience.

I paired this wine with tofu kimchi over rice, and it paired much better than I expected.

Kimchi generally has a bold spiciness with a tangy and savory feel. The complex flavors of this meal pair perfectly with the complex flavors and aromas of the “Beesling.” The spice mitigates the sweetness, and the sweetness mitigates the heat, as we see in all Rieslings.

However, characteristic of only this wine, I find that the chili and ginger add a completely different comparison that takes these fruity flavors and matches perfectly with the fermented vegetables.

To consume this wine at its best, I would recommend opening it while at room temperature and putting it in the fridge 15 minutes before serving.

Winery: A to Z Wineworks

Varietal: Oregon Riesling 

Vintage: 2021

Locations: Portland, Oregon

Price: $15–19

Pairing: Tofu kimchi

I would like to emphasize that this column is not a review; my purpose for writing this series is to provide as much information about a wine as I can so that you can find your niche.

If you would like to inquire about anything I have talked about in these columns or recommend wines for me to pair in the future email me at [email protected].

Drink up!