I’m having a TOTAL blonde day !
I’m heading down to the latest edition of this tasting on Monday.
Any other community members planning to be there?
Not quite, but we’ll be in the Alsace tasting in Brighton on Tuesday.
Just got the list of wines through today, and really can’t wait…!
Looking forward to hearing what were your favourites…
Interesting notes, thanks.
It’s been a while since I had an Alsace wine (though plenty of pinot bianco and sivi from elsewhere, and the odd Riesling). Bit concerned how so many of the Rieslings seem to elicit “petrol” and “lime” . I hate both of these , for different reasons - basically I want a Riesling with no hint of petrol or lime!
Many thanks to all concerned for the interesting and informative notes. I’m sure they’ll have a bearing on my next order. The Cattin Edelzwicker is definitely going in.
I have a single bottle of the Weinbach ‘Altenbourg’ Gewurz 2013 and was wondering when to broach. Thanks again @MarkC, your notes for that one are much appreciated.
Well, we had a fantastic time tasting some amazing Alsatian wines yesterday in Brighton. Thanks to the Tasting Team for the organisation – the atmosphere was great, and all the growers were enthusiastic, informative and warm.
There were so many favourites – so I’m not going to bore you with detailed notes on each one (she said, optimistically! ); but wanted to mention a couple revelations: firstly, that well-made Gewurztraminer can age, and age beautifully at that!
These were special, seductive wines in their own way; perfumed, musky, with a whiff of rose water and Turkish delight (the Dopff au Moulin) as well as spearmint (The Beyer), oily on the palate, with wonderful texture and well defined fruit and floral notes – perfect autumn wines:
(Note that we tasted the 2010)
(We tasted the 2009, but neither is on the website)
Secondly, Pinot Noir is definitely getting better in Alsace! We tasted all seven, and liked most of them (perhaps the Ginglinger ‘Les Rocailles’ 2016 was our least favourite – it was quite tart and lean, but probably needed more time in bottle).
All, without an exception, had a beautiful, berry, floral, forest fruit sort of nose – the sort you just want to sniff and sniff until Judgement Day. Our favourites on both nose and palate were:
(excellent value for money there!)
(Strangely, we preferred it to the more expensive examples)
(This one was a beauty- understated if well evolved, though still fresh as a daisy!)
It was also a good chance to compare Sylvaner from different producers, and the top one, with a unanimous vote of 2, was the 2015 Sylvaner Grand Cru Zotzenberg from Boeckel. The nose was lovely – a bit musky, with white flowers and orchard fruit, which continued on the palate, but it was its texture – creamy and so much fuller and chewier than expected – that really won us. Long minerally finish sealed it – it is a real beauty of a wine:
The Chardonnay from Dopff au Moulin was a citrus and spice delight – a real surprise of a wine, and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. Etienne-Arnaud Dopff was entertaining and informative, telling us how this wine came about (potential alcohol was too high to use for sparkling, which ignited curiosity about what a pure Chardonnay from this tiny plot would taste like). The first vintage of this was 2015, none in 2016, so this one is only the second vintage. It almost sounded like they are making this for the fun of it.
Their Vendanges Tardives was to die for as well – a succulent, opulent but extremely well balanced wine. We preferred it to Zind-Humbrecht offering.
The Rieslings that wowed us most were:
(Expansive on the palate, zesty and yet rich!)
(No written notes, but a huge smiley face scribbled)
(Incredible value for money!)
(Ahhh, Trimbach! )
A bit squiffy on the bus back home, we sketched out our next Alsatian holiday for summer 2020….
Forgot to mention- this was wonderful - and will definitely grace our wine rack:
Summer pudding, forest berries, sunshine and joy in a glass…
Also had a great evening at the Alsace tasting in London the previous night. It would appear we had similar thoughts on many of the wines.
My favourite Riesling was:
Scribbled notes were: “Pronounced nose. Lime, floral, mild sherbet. Lovely finish. Tingling acidity. Best Riesling so far. Buy”
Same winner from the Sylvaners
“Apples, pears, blossom. Rich, broad, well balanced. Nice!”
I wasn’t blown away by the Pinot Noirs, other than the Louis Sipp
I noted this maintained lovely freshness with red fruits alongside signs of development and maturity. I think the 2021 drink by date on TWS notes is definitely conservative.
Of the Domaine Mure trio my pick was
“cherries, wood. Rich and full”
Also really enjoyed the line up of Gewurtztraminer, a couple of stand outs being
“rich, spicy, just off dry finish, really nice”
Simply recorded as “refined, smooth, balanced. Yes!”
I wonder if your preferred PN is a red Burgundy? if so, then I can see that these will just not be in the same league. What both me and the other half agreed on was that these were much more akin to a good Spätburgunder in style (especially Baden/Pfalz style) than Burgundy.
They are not opulent (though we loved the nose virtually on each one) - and most are quite lean, but we loved the purity of fruit, the undergrowth smell and the clean dry, slightly chalky finish on most.
Of course, it’s always a matter of taste!
Did you try the Muscat @Inbar?
I wrote “pungent perfume, grapes, pineapple. Interesting but couldn’t drink much of it”
I think I may have been slightly skewed in my view coming to it after a row of Riesling and Sylvaner, and I note on another thread @szaki1974 is a fan. Be interested to hear your thoughts.
Funnily enough - same impressions here! Was not moved, and would certainly not pay £20 for it. Their Gewurtz on the other hand……. wow! It was wonderful!
Yes, I think you’re right. No argument the others were good wines, just not ones that I would necessarily choose.
Do these prices include your discount for attending? They look a bit different from my basket…
Oops, yes - sorry, I appear to have done the links from the discounted list…
I’ll have half a case of each please
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A few of the producers were at a showroom tasting this evening. The Cattin Pinot Noir mentioned here was, I thought, out-classed by a Ginglinger PN: Les Rocailles 2016, at £20. Good nose, lots of interesting flavours. Zind Humbrecht, not surprisingly, were the other memorable ones, especially Riesling Clos Hauserer 2014 and Pinot Gris Roche Calcaire: much more interest and spice than most PGs. Their Gewurztraminer Roche Roulée was good, but not as outstanding for the grape as the Riesling and PG. The Turckheim Gewurz. VT (at only £20.50) was worth considering.
A slightly unbalanced tasting: I was glad to have the chance to try 2 each of Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris (out of a total of 12), and better to try the 2 Pinots Noirs than to buy Alsace PN (although the Ginglinger one was better than expected). But only 1 Riesling seems odd.
Sounds interesting, thank you for your thoughts. If you could spare a moment would you say a little more about the ZH 2014 Riesling Clos Hauserer? I have 3 bottles I bought on a whim a few years ago and don’t know quite what to expect- I don’t know the ZH style, and haven’t had any 2014 whites from Alsace. Eg do you think it would benefit from longer in bottle, or is it good to go now? Thank you.
It would certainly keep longer (especially if you, like me, like your rieslings with some age. TWS note was
‘wine with tremendous cellaring potential. We tend to buy this wine when it ferments dry, but in 2014 there is a little residual sugar, retained intentionally to balance the marked acidity. Fine minerality here and great length.’
Minerality is rather a weasel word, but otherwise I would agree with this (certainly the best wine of the tasting for me). It wasn’t bone dry, but only slightly less dry than that.
I would keep it, but if you have 3 bottles, you might want to try one now to get an idea of it.
Ah! Goes to show how different palates are! We did not get on with the Ginglinger PN - it felt a bit tart on the palate, with a sharp finish, and lacking in fruit - though we liked the nose very much! The Cattin is more of an easy quaffer, perhaps, but felt more generous on the palate.
Horses for courses… etc.