05 July 2013

June Rieslings of Alsace

While I've sung a lot of praises for Alsatian Pinot Gris in the past year, it would be wrong to deny the German grape's influence in this hybrid region of France and Germany. This online tasting (through Twitter) provided us with an opportunity to sample four recent bottles of Riesling from Alsace.

2011 Meyer-Fonné Riesling Reserve
Alsace, France
$15, 12% abv.

The family behind the Domaine came to Katzenthal from Switzerland in 1732, but the winery is a more recent operation. The body is light and mild, while the flavors are dry pear with crisp acidity.

2011 Domaine Ostertag Riesling
Alsace, France
$24, 13% abv.

The name of this winery means "Easter Day" in the local dialect. The wine has a nose of ild peach with low acidity, round body, and a gentle finish. Quite an elegant summer sipper.

2010 Trimbach Riesling
Alsace, France
$15, 12.5% abv.

The venerable Trimbach estate has been around since 1626 though the center of operations has moved around due to the ravages of war over the centuries. This little Riesling has just a touch of citrus but lots of minerality. The most austere and most Germanic of the tasting.

2011 Domaine Weinbach Cuvée Theo Riesling
Alsace, France
$25, 13.5% abv.

This Domaine was established in 1612 by Capuchin monks (the same order whose distinctive cloaks gave us the word cappuccino). I found this Riesling to be the most mysterious of the group, with dark floral aromas and a very mild body. It is one that did not give up its profile easily when chilled, but opened up over time and with warming to reveal gentle white fruit flavors and just a hint of acidity.

Note: These wines were provided as samples.

No comments: