2017 Domaine Weinbach

weinbach vines

Domaine Weinbach is one of the world's leading white wine producer, with excellence across the range making it extremely difficult to pick a single 'best' wine. Their immense success is due in part to the quality of the terroir, of course, but their super strict biodynamic management of the vineyard that ensures low yields and strict berry selection is also a big part of the equation. Add to that low-intervention winemaking, using wild yeasts and maturation in old casks, and the end result is simply stunning. 

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THE WINES

“I have already nailed my colours to the mast by listing Domaine Weinbach in my 100 Most Iconic Wine Estates book. I am always absolutely mesmerised by the thrilling wines from this Domaine.” - Matthew Jukes 

2017 Pinot Blanc - $56 (dry)
70% Pinot Auxerrois, 30% Pinot Blanc
In Alsace, the term "Pinot Blanc" can be used to describe wines made from any or all of the following grapes: Pinot Blanc, Auxerrois, Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir. Weinbach’s blend comes from both the Clos des Capucins’45-year-old vines and a plot from the limestone-clay soils at the foot of the Altenbourg vineyard. As with the dry Rieslings, the Pinot Blanc is whole bunch pressed, and it is the only wine at the Domaine fermented and raised in steel tank. Obviously, we would not offer this wine unless we thought it was outstanding. The 2017 is a super delicious example, riper than recent years and therefore more textural with a core of something exotic threaded through with a punchy, grapefruit-y freshness.
 
2017 Cuvée Théo Riesling - $78 (dry)
The Cuvée Théo Riesling comes exclusively from the monopole Le Clos des Capucins, which sits at the base of the celebrated Schlossberg hill. The soils here consist of sand, alluvial pebbles and granitic gravel. Here the low cropping vines offer up a supple, pithy Riesling that’s beautifully accessible young; a reflection of the sandy soils. In terms of the winemaking, all Weinbach Riesling is whole cluster pressed, fermented without any yeast additions and matured in very old oak casks resting for 8-10 months. The 2017 is fleshy, opulent and wonderfully seductive yet all this texture is cut with citrusy, vibrant acidity and drive. The finish is long and juicy. Lovely stuff.
 
2017 Grand Cru Schlossberg Riesling - $138 (dry)
The Schlossberg hill has long been revered as one the world’s greatest Riesling vineyards. It’s a granite outcrop that rises north of Kaysersberg and Kientzheim and sits at an altitude of 230-350 metres. With 8 hectares, the Faller family are the largest owners in the Schlossberg and craft an extraordinary family of Rieslings from the hill, parcelled and bottled according to vine age and altitude. This wine is cropped from three parcels of the highest vines that the family own, at the very top of the slope. Here the soils are shallow and rocky and are therefore very mineral – with the eroded granite having a reddish tinge and high magnesium content. This combination of altitude, poor soils and low yields is a potent one and gifts a deep but always dry and mineral Riesling, with an intense freshness to balance the wine’s flesh. The 2017 is a cracker – a super juicy, vibrant, racy Riesling with all kinds of citrus pith, nutmeg and white pepper spice and a long, saline close. Simply a stunning white.
 
2017 Grand Cru Schlossberg Cuvée Sainte Catherine Riesling - $168 (dry)
This cuvée is not only a truly memorable expression of Riesling, but it is also simply a brilliant white wine. It’s crafted from five plots of 60-plus year vines in the heart of the Schlossberg slope where the sun exposure and granitic, mineral-rich soils beget a particularly deep, coiled and profound dry Riesling. The wine takes its name from the day of Sainte Catherine, which falls on the 25th of November. Early vintages of the wine were picked on or around that date, drawing opulence and complexity from Alsace’s late Autumn. Today it can be picked as much as one month earlier, if not more. It does, however, remain the deepest and most profound dry Riesling of the Domaine and the 2017 is no exception. Expect waves of pulpy, stone fruit and orange rind, a sexy, fleshy texture and a vibrant, driven close that’s all class. Fabulous.
 
2017 Gewürztraminer - $66
Weinbach is one of the very finest Domaines for this grape variety in Alsace. The style stands out for its purity, balance and savouriness, and for not having any of the overt, confected notes that mark so many examples. Restrained focus is the theme. This was the wine that was formerly called “Cuvée Résèrve”, a name that has been dropped. Everything else is the same. It could be called the ‘entry-level’ Weinbach Gewürztraminer although there is really no such thing at this Domaine. From old vines in the Clos des Capucins, this is a Gewürz that is pitched at the drier end of the spectrum and the sandy soils promote both prettiness and perfume. Above all, it is super fine, with notes of peach, rose petals, five-spice, and musk. So pure, delicate and perfumed yet it will comfortably stand up to very intense food. The 2017 finished with under 20 grams residual.
 

To purchase any of the products in today's newsletter please give us a call on (07) 3252 1117, or email info@thewineemporium.com.au. Prices valid until 05.03.19

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