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Sunday, 21 July 2013

Pinot Noir Rosé from Alsace

A review of two rosés from Alsace's Dopff & Irion and La Cave Des Vignerons De Pfaffenheim

A cool-climate Pinot Noir rosé makes, at first thought, for an odd concept. It feels like a bit of an anomaly -  the world's most famously finnicky and low-yielding grape made into a picnic wine; it's a bit like driving to the supermarket in a Lamborghini.

And yet in next-door Champagne, it is used extensively, sometimes even solely, to make the local fizz, so there is a precedent; Alsace, being barely any further south but more sheltered, can therefore do the same but producing bigger, fuller more food-friendly wines that don't need secondary fermentation to become interesting.

These two examples are full and crowd-pleasingly ripe, but not overly plump - a sort of Scarlett Johansson of wines.

La Cave Des Vignerons De Pfaffenheim, Pinot Noir Rosé, 2011

Salmon pink in the glass, restrained nose; ripe red fruits, a hint of aromatic smokiness, good savouriness and length, full and weighty with nicely rounded acidity. Gentle persistence on the finish. Good.

Match with salmon or a quiche with tomatoes or red bell peppers.

Dopff & Irion Alsace Pinot Noir Rosé, 2012

This is also lovely - quite a deep, translucent red, on the nose there are hints of smokey spice and beeswax with varietal red fruits.

On the palate, there is lots of ripe red fruit and a fleshy Alsatian richness with some smokey spice. Good savouriness and length with pleasant rounded acidity. Good.

Lovely, well-balanced, easy-drinking rosé; match with picnic food - cold cuts, quiche and cheese.

Other related articles
Two Wines from Dopff & Irion
La Cave des Vignerons de Pfaffenheim - Alsace

Dopff & Irion - website
La Cave Des Vignerons De Pfaffenheim - website

Image credit: Scarlett Johansson http://www.kernelscorner.com/2012/05/scarlett-johansson-avengers-vs-iron-man.html

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