Zind Humbrecht, Gewurztraminer 'Turckheim' AOC, Alsace
£19.99

Pale and bright yellow colour. The nose shows less of the typical floral aromas but much more spicy intensity. Quite open at this early stage, it has a nice purity. Like many 2014s, the attack and palate is more intense than expected. The wine has a dry structure but delicate roundness, enhanced by nice acidity so there is neither excess weight nor austerity or bitterness. The wine opens up very nicely and is showing less varietal character. The finish is dry, long and harmonious. This makes it extremely interesting with food, and not just of the spicy types.

Although the Humbrecht family can trace their winemaking heritage back over 10 generations, the Domaine Zind Humbrecht story really began in 1959 through the amalgamation of the Zind and Humbrecht family vineyards. Under the stewardship of first Léonard and then Olivier Humbrecht, the domain has grown to around 40 hectares, including of some of the very best parcels in Alsace’s top Grand Cru and Lieu Dit sites. Crafting a range of elegant and expressive wines from these diverse terroirs, Olivier has a non-interventionist approach in the cellar, with extremely gentle pressing, lengthy fermentations, and long lees contact. At the end of the 20th century the domain moved towards organic and biodynamic viticulture in the vineyard, and since 2002 it has been certified fully biodynamic.

Viticulture: The vineyards used to make this wine all originate from the Cru Village Turckheim. Gewurztraminer plantings are interspersed with Pinot Gris and the varieties are often found side by side. The gewürztraminer however, unlike the Pinot Gris, has some much older vines, some of which are really very old vines (planted in the late 1940s and 50s). The single vineyard Herrenweg is in the middle of what should become the Cru Turckheim (if it is awarded Cru Village status). In 2014, unfortunately, they had some serious loss in this grape variety as it suffered a big drosophila attack. The precocity of the vineyard and the colour of the grapes (warm orange/red) attracted the insects. Field selections were drastic but we eventually blended the Herrenweg wine with this one. There was of course no interest in allowing botrytis to develop and therefore the fermentation was quite fast and the wine finished easily dry.

Vinification: The grapes for this wine were harvested by hand and transferred to the winery in small containers to prevent any crushing in transport. They were then whole-bunch pressed in a Bucher pneumatic press, allowing for a slow and gentle pressing. In 2014, fermentations were quicker than usual, so it finished dry with no surprise. Bottles in August 2015.

Tasting Notes: Pale and bright yellow colour. The nose shows less of the typical floral aromas but much more spicy intensity. Quite open at this early stage, it has a nice purity. Like many 2014s, the attack and palate is more intense than expected. The wine has a dry structure but delicate roundness, enhanced by nice acidity so there is neither excess weight nor austerity or bitterness. The wine opens up very nicely and is showing less varietal character. The finish is dry, long and harmonious. This makes it extremely interesting with food, and not just of the spicy types.

Origin: AOC Alsace Varietals: 100% Gewurztraminer