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Gustave Lorentz Riesling Reserve 2020
Producer: Gustave Lorentz
Region: Alsace AOC
Wine Composition: 100% Riesling
The Riesling Reserve has a pale-yellow color, with green tints. Expressive aromas of oranges and orange peel, apples, bananas, lemons, and lemon peel. The palate is well-balanced, the length is long, and there is a saline nuance giving the wine an uncompromising dryness.
This is an excellent wine for grilled, lightly cooked and raw seafood and fish, as well as chicken, pork, veal and goat cheese.
The 2020 vintage will long be remembered as a special year of exceptional quality. The unusually mild temperatures in winter, the fine weather which followed, and the beautiful spring conditions were particularly ideal. Regular rains from mid-June onwards improved spring conditions and were particularly ideal. July will remain a historic month since it was quite simply the driest month ever recorded in Colmar. It firmed the vintage. The harvest began on August 24th at a steady pace. Warm, sunny days were followed by cool nights, preserving the aromatic potential and acidity of the grapes.
Alsace, AOC Wine
Alsace has always been in a bit of a pickle. Its perilous location on the border of Germany and France made the area a tug-of-war for centuries. Today if you visit Alsace, you can see how the interventions of two mega empires affected the area through its architecture and the presence of both French and German languages.
The food and the wine of Alsace is also a bit of a mish mash. For instance, Germanic grape varieties like Gewurztraminer and Riesling dominate the French départment, but in Alsace they are produced in a very different style.
Two words can pretty well sum up Alsace even if there is much more to know:
Alsace wine will change your perception of a traditionally sweet Riesling. Besides Riesling, Alsace produces quite a lot of Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Crémant d’Alsace: a sparkling wine that is mushrooming in popularity.
Alsacian wine is all about aromas. Floral and peachy smells fly out of the glass and many of the wines are unctuous enough to pair nicely with savory fowl, like roast quail. Alsace wines give the tingle of brilliant acidity but also offer a rich texture from moderate alcohol (some wines are 14 – 15% ABV). The producers in Alsace do not use oak aging to add spice and richness, instead they rely on a balance of ripeness and alcohol to fill out the flavor.
Alsace’s capitol city is Strasbourg. The region can be found in the very eastern side of France in a valley along the Rhine River – a river that separates France and Germany. On the other side of the river is Baden, a German wine region that produces wines in a similar style. The region is broken up into two parts:
Contrary to logic, the Bas-Rhin is actually to the north and the Haut-Rhin is in the south, but the difference is all elevation. The best vineyards have long been associated with the Haut-Rhin. In the Haut-Rhin is where you will find many of the pretigious Alsace Grand Cru vineyards.
The Lorentz family has been making wine since 1836 in the heart of the Alsace, which lies in the northeast corner of France, along the Rhine River. Charles Lorentz Sr., grandfather of the current president of Gustave Lorentz, developed his vineyards on the hills of Altenberg de Bergheim, in the foothills of the Vosges Mountains, which has grown to 85 acres in this extraordinary terroir, with four acres planted on the hills of the Grand Cru Kanzlerberg and 30 acres in the Grand Cru Altenberg de Bergheim.
The current management, led by Georges Lorentz, is the sixth generation of the family firm, headquartered in the medieval village of Bergheim, in the Haut-Rhin. As far back as anyone can recall, the grapes harvested from this extraordinary terroir have been vinified separately. Thus, Riesling, Pinot-Gris, Gewurztraminer and other Muscat varieties from the Altenberg de Bergheim vineyards unerringly express their unique qualities in these wines year-to-year. The family is very proud that the wines are “gastronomic,” meaning fresh, clean, well-balanced and mostly dry – great matches for many of the cuisines from the more than 55 countries where the wines are sold.
As they have down through the generations, the Lorentz family hues to tradition while also employing state-of-the-art vinification techniques and equipment. Gustave Lorentz was among the first producers in the Alsace to use stelvin (screw-cap) closures. In 2012 the Gustave Lorentz vineyards became certified organic by Ecocert.
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