Cave de Ribeauville Riesling Osterberg Grand Cru 2017
Pronounced mineral aroma, but the flavors show ripe peach and apple set against a rich texture. Dry with a floral after-taste.
This is the ideal companion for seafood, such as sole and shellfish, as well as white meats!
The Cave de Ribeauvillé covers a single vineyard of 580 acres with 8 Grands Crus and many soils of great value. The total surface is managed by a quality chart which guarantees strict control of the yields, sustainable growth of the vineyards or even organic farming, and… manual harvest.
This choice for quality allows sorting of the best grapes that are transported in small elevator-wagons to the presses, without any pumping or handling. The juices then simply flow into the vats by the force of gravity. This method, unique in Alsace, enables all of the aromatic virtues of each varietal to be conserved. The wines express all the richness and diversity of the Alsatian soils. They are pure, straight and frank, with nice freshness and aromatic intensity.
With its fairytale aesthetic, Germanic influence and strong emphasis on white wines, Alsace is one of France’s most unique viticultural regions. This hotly contested stretch of land running north to south on France’s northeastern border has spent much of its existence as German territory. Nestled in the rain shadow of the Vosges mountains, it is one of the driest regions of France but enjoys a long and cool growing season. Autumn humidity facilitates the development of “noble rot” for the production of late-picked sweet wines, Vendange Tardive and Sélection de Grains Nobles.
The best wines of Alsace can be described as aromatic and honeyed, even when completely dry. The region’s “noble” varieties, the only ones permitted within Alsace’s 51 Grands Crus vineyards, are Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Muscat, and Pinot Gris.
Riesling is Alsace’s main specialty. In its youth, Alsace Riesling is dry, fresh and floral, but develops complex mineral and flint character with age. Gewurztraminer is known for its signature spice and lychee aromatics, and is often utilized for late harvest wines. Pinot Gris is prized for its combination of crisp acidity and savory spice as well as ripe stone fruit flavors. Muscat, vinified dry, tastes of ripe green grapes and fresh rose petal.
Other varieties grown here include Pinot Blanc, Auxerrois, Chasselas, Sylvaner and Pinot Noir—the only red grape permitted in Alsace and mainly used for sparkling rosé known as Crémant d’Alsace. Most Alsace wines are single-varietal bottlings and unlike other French regions, are also labeled with the variety name.
Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining its identity. A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, this versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Somm Secret—Given how difficult it is to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling from the label, here are some clues to find the dry ones. First, look for the world “trocken.” (“Halbtrocken” or “feinherb” mean off-dry.) Also a higher abv usually indicates a drier Riesling.