Alsace: A Wine Region Apart
Alsace is French, but with deep German cultural roots. Located on the German border, its control has switched back and forth between the two countries over the years. The Vosage Mountains provide protection from harsh weather from the west. Although the region is northerly, it enjoys long hours of sunshine that allow the grapes to ripen nicely.
The use of the name of the grape variety can be used on the label in Alsace. This practice is consumer-friendly, particularly for Americans who are used to shopping for their wine by the grape.
Riesling To The Rescue
Riesling is my favorite white wine. I'm particularly drawn to dry Riesling, although semi-dry often allows a fuller expression of flavors. German Riesling tends to be sweeter than Alsace, although dry wines in German are on the rise.
Alsace produces some of the best Riesling in the world. Quality bottlings can age for a decade or more.
I recently tried to "rebalance" our wine collection by purchasing a half case of whites. The Domaine De La Tour Blanche was in the shipment. Winemaker Daniel Klack and father Jean are part of a family tradition that dates back to 1628. Vines for this wine are 45 to 50 years old.
This wine has nice threads of minerality with precise flavors of white blossoms. The wine has medium acidity and finishes dry with a dash of pepper. The alcohol level is 12.5%, meaning it will be a nice wine for food pairing or to sip solo.
For about $15, this was a great bargain. Alsace wines are distinctive and their whites are superb. Explore Alsace on your next visit to the wine shop.