Zind-Humbrecht with UK distributor, Gonzalez-Byass.
Not fully France, yet not completely Teutonic, Alsace is a colourful Franco-Germanic borderland that seems to take the best of both cultures and make the whole greater than the sum of the parts.
Alsace wines are labelled varietally, like German wines, but with no indication of sweetness levels and, for the better wines, do give some more-detailed indication of geographic provenance.
Olivier Humbrecht characterises 2014 as a year of superb acidity, good physiological ripeness giving wines of great precision and structure.
Richard Bampfield MW put it another way - these wines don't show the sort of typicity that would lead you to put them in front of MW students, but they reflect their origins very well.
Like mature Bordeaux or Jura, I don't often get a chance to taste a full range from Alsace, so this event was a rare treat.
The Rieslings were especially fresh and drinkable, the Pinots Gris bigger and fuller while the Gewurztraminers, if technically correct and impressive, tended towards a monolithic fullness that did not always make the heart beat faster.
The most interestingly atypical wine was the Riesling Roche Volcanique 2014 which for me had a Wachau-esque minerality and tense precision and which Richard Bampfield likened to a Condrieu.
Everything from Clos Windsbuhl scored at least Very Good; the Rangen de Thann wines were the most impressive technically if also the most expensive.
Prices ranged from mid-teens to around £65
Muscat Goldert Grand Cru 2014
‘Zind’ Chardonnay Auxerrois 2014
Riesling Roche Volcanique 2014
Riesling Clos Windsbuhl 2014
Riesling Rangen de Thann Clos Saint Urbain Grand Cru 2014
Pinot Gris Table
Pinot Gris Rotenberg 2014
Pinot Gris Clos Windsbuhl 2014
Pinot Gris Heimbourg 2014
Gewurztraminer Calcaire 2014
Gewurztraminer Clos Windsbuhl 2013
Gewurztraminer Rangen de Thann Clos Saint Urbain Grand Cru 2013
Pinot Gris Clos Jebsal Vendange Tardive 2010
Pinot Gris Clos Windsbuhl Selections de Grains Nobles 2008
Other related articles
Wine-buying in France: Alsace