Wine on airlines? My typical perspective: nothing like having a captive audience to make the unremarkable palatable. Recently I flew Lufthansa on an international flight (to head to Spain on a sponsored trip with Segura Viudas) and was impressed with a couple offerings. The first was a French white wine, the 2011 Reserve de la Baume Vermentino. I’m more familiar with Italian Vermentino, and normally in France this grape is called “Rolle.” But I’ve never seen Rolle, let alone Vermentino, on the front label of a wine bottle. (I also didn’t know that it came in a plastic bottle, which would makes sense on an airplane where every extra ounce of weight gets scrutinized.) This wine hails from Southern France, not too far from Montpellier. It was a richer, more golden Vermentino than I’ve encountered, and was a pleasantly tasty surprise.
But little did I know, sparkling wine was also available. I didn’t see it on the beverage cart, let alone think to ask for it. Luckily I was tipped off on its existence thanks to a fellow sparkling wine enthusiast on this trip, Kelly Magyarics. My return flight would be resplendent with sparkling wine!
The sparkling wine served? Sekt. (Which is a term for German sparkling wine, much like Cava in Spain.) Henkell Trocken was the specific brand. It’s a wine I had not tried in years; I remember (8+ years ago) a coworker at Esquin was nuts for it and would buy Henkell Trocken by the case. I was surprised at how refreshing, brisk, and clean-tasting it was. Hey, I know it’s not Dom Perignon, but it was perfect for the long, transatlantic flight. Also paired nicely with crackers and Graham Greene.
OK, full confession. I may not have been reading “The Power and the Glory” the whole time I was drinking the Henkell Trocken. The Will Ferrell/Zach Galifianakis movie “The Candidate” was possibly involved. Was it something I’d watch on terra firma? Probably.
More importantly: is Henkell Trocken something I’d drink when on the ground and in need of a lively, good-quality, inexpensive sparkling wine?
Lufthansa photo courtesy BriYYZ.