Cave de Turkheim, Brand, Pinot gris, AOC Alsace Grand Cru, France, 2005
Cave de Turkheim is a top Alsacian co-op, and Brand is a grand cru vineyard in the village of Turkheim.
There are no IGP wines in Alsace, just AOC (AOP) and AOC (AOP) Grand Cru classifications. Most wines are varietal, and labelled so, of the 4 noble varieties of gewurztraminer, pinot gris, muscat and riesling, though some wines are blends which are labelled edelswicker. Other varieties are pinot blanc, pinot noir and sylvaner.
The E-SE-SW sloping vineyards of Alsace stretch N-S over about 60 miles in the lee of the Vosges Mountains, which trap westerly rain bearing winds, protecting Alsace, which is as a result the driest department in France. The climate is continental, the soils are wide ranging from limestone to clay to schist and granite.
Natural cork closure, 13.5% abv, widely available about £18.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity gold, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, of medium (+) intensity, developing, with aromas of peachy stone fruit, warm pineapple and honey, with hints of coconut and aniseed.
Palate: a dry wine, with medium (+) acidity, a slight gummy grip, medium (+) alcohol, with a medium (+) body and a lightly oily texture, with medium intensity flavours of peach juice and unripe pineapple, with hints of quince, butter and candle wax. A medium (+) length with a clean slightly gummy finish.
Quality: a very good quality wine, with balanced acidity and alcohol, which are harmonious with the flavour intensity; quite a complex wine, developing, with all sorts of interesting nuances. A decent concentration of flavour, but disappointing on the length, which had the expectation of being considerably longer. A wine which is ready to drink now, but will cellar and evolve a little over 3-5 years.