(2021) The nose is rather neutral on this Alsace Riesling, apple and lemon, maybe the vaguest suggestion of honey. On the palate there's some residual sweetness, and good clarity, lemon being the predominant note to fruit and acidity. If you are an Alsace fan looking for incisive character of the best Rieslings it may disappoint, but it falls into the category of 'very pleasant' rather neatly. Part of the Lidl summer 2021 wine tour.
(2021) Bott-Geyl farms organically and this Riesling is organic- and biodynamic-certified. Aromatically it has a touch of kerosene and beeswax, distinctively Riesling, with some floral notes and the crunch of juicy apples. In the mouth, is it just off-dry? Certainly the finish is dry and balanced, but there is a sweetness to the fruit on the mid-palate certainly, with a free-flowing clear fruit profile that gives way to a pithy citrus edge in the finish.
(2021) Another Alsace wine with no real clue that it is a touch off-dry from the label, but that is not un-typical with Alsace Pinot Gris. Succulent and ripe on the nose, there is stone fruit and lemon, leading onto a full and fat palate, the weighty texture of the wine filling the mouth, and the dry, pear-like and citrussy cut of the fruit just nicely offset by that hint of sweetness.
(2021) A very attractive rendition of Muscat this, not lacking in the distinctively floral and nettle freshness of the varietal aromas, but with plenty of crunchy, vivid, bone-dry apple fruit and a great searing core of citrus acidity that drives the finish with a bit of real personality. Quite full bodied, it's a long and powerful wine, finishing punchy and pithy.
(2021) One of the 'problems' people often cite with Alsace wines is that they do not know from the label whether the wine will be bone-dry or distinctly off-dry. Some producers have adopted numbering systems to indicate this, but still a wine like this, a Grand Cru, with a full 13.5% alcohol, I expected to be dry when in fact it is more like medium-sweet - a potential partner for light desserts as well as Chinese food and some creamier cheeses. It has Gewurz fragrance of rose petals and Nivea cream, and a oily, unctuous palate where ripe and sweet tropical fruit, plenty of sugar and spice, is met by acidity in the finish, to balance but not dry the final impression.
(2020) What a nice fizz from the organic vineyards of Charles Baur, a blend of 40% Pinot Blanc, 40% Pinot Auxerrois and 20% Chardonnay, it is made by the traditional method with 24-months on the lees, and is as approachable and crowd-pleasing as you like, but really rather fine. Clean, crisp orchard fruits on the nose with just a suggestion biscuity quality, then super fresh but generous and not at all tart or acidic on the palate, a little herbal note along with the apple fruit into a clean, fresh finish. Food-friendly stuff too - for fish and chips perhaps?
(2020) From 30-year-old vines grown on silty soils over chalk, this wine matures on the lees for several months. That adds some weight and texture to this otherwise crisp and zingy-fresh Riesling, pale in colour and offering scents of fresh-cut apple, a touch of blossom, and a suggestion of Epsom salts in the background. In the mouth it has some weight and concentration, but the citrus zest vitality and delicate sense of minerals in the finish keep it focused and long into the finish. A lovely rendition of a classic style.
(2020) Chardonnay is not one of Alsace's noble varieties, hence this is not an AOC wine and is MMXVII - it cannot be sold as a vintage wine. Unoaked I think, but has creaminess and some buttery character from lees ageing presumably, and it is a pretty, floral-edged and clean orchard fruit style, wild yeast fermenation just adding an earthy, herbal nuance. It has texture and some mouth-filling weight, a touch of sweetness or just very ripe fruit, which gives a tropical edge on the palate, but a balanced and easy finish, the acidity doing its job admirably in an enjoyable rendition of Chardonnay.
(2020) Muscat d’Alsace may not be the most famous variety of the region, but it is distinctive and in the hands of a producer like Baur, makes for fascinating and delicious drinking. Very pale in colour, the nose offers up thos musky, floral aromas so typical of the Muscat family of grape varieties, but there's a hint of a more serious, grippy fruit skin character too. In the mouth the merest hint of sweetness in a basiclly dry wine, but such lovely tang and clarity, mouth-watering lemon zest acidity and little spice and grapefruit pith notes too in an impeccably balanced wine.
(2019) A terrific traditional method sparkling wine from the organic and biodynamic estate of Dirler-Cadé. The blend is 45% Pinot Gris, 35% Auxerrois and 20% Pinot Noir, in a 'zero dosage' wine with a negligible 0.9 g/l of residual sugar. It is immediately sheer and glacial, the cool, crisp fruits on the nose joined by subtle nuances of nettles and herbs, a tiny hint of the yeasty character from its time on the lees. In the mouth it is intense and invigorating, not at all tart of mean, but just riven with it zippy acidity and bold fruit concentration.