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2014 Riesling, Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Lucas & Andre Rieffel

2014 Riesling, Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Lucas & Andre Rieffel

White | Drink now | Domaine Lucas & Andre Rieffel | Code:  42142 | 2014 | France > Alsace > AOC Alsace > Riesling AOC Alsace | Riesling | Light-Medium Bodied, Dry | 12.5 % alcohol

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The Producer

Domaine Lucas & Andre Rieffel

Domaine Lucas & Andre Rieffel

In the Bas-Rhin near the town of Barr, surrounding the village of Mittelbergheim, are located the 9.5ha of vineyards owned by Lucas Rieffel and his father André. Lucas took over the reins in 1996, and he has been working towards becoming organic ever since...Since the 2009 harvest wines have been 100% organic.

Benefiting from a spicy mix of sandstone, clay, marl, granite and limestone soils, Lucas's strength lies particularly in his range of fine varietal (fruit) wines, notably Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer, Muscat, Sylvaner & increasingly Pinot Noir.

However he also produces stunning wines from the single Grand Cru vineyard sites of Wiebelsberg, Zotzenberg & Kirchberg de Barr.

Vinification is a traditional blend of 'foudres' and stainless-steel, with malolactic fermentation the norm.

The Grape

Riesling

Riesling

Riesling's twin peaks are its intense perfume and its piercing crisp acidity which it manages to retain even at high ripeness levels.

In Germany, Riesling constitutes around 20% of total plantings, yet it is responsible for all its greatest wines. It is planted widely on well-drained, south-facing slate-rich slopes, with the greatest wines coming from the best slopes in the best villages. It produces delicate, racy, nervy and stylish wines that cover a wide spectrum of flavours from steely and bone dry with beautifully scented fruits of apples,apricots, and sometimes peaches, through to the exotically sweet flavours of the great sweet wines.

It is also an important variety in Alsace where it produces slightly earthier, weightier and fuller wines than in Germany. The dry Rieslings can be austere and steely with hints of honey while the Vendages Tardives and Sélection de Grains Nobles are some of the greatest sweet wines in the world.

It is thanks to the New World that Riesling is enjoying a marked renaissance. In Australia the grape has developed a formidable reputation, delivering lime-sherbet fireworks amid the continental climate of Clare Valley an hour's drive north of Adelaide, while Barossa's Eden Valley is cooler still, producing restrained stony lime examples from the elevated granitic landscape; Tasmania is fast becoming their third Riesling mine, combining cool temperatures with high UV levels to deliver stunning prototypes.

New Zealand shares a similar climate, with Riesling and Pinot Gris neck to neck in their bid to be the next big thing after Sauvignon Blanc; perfectly suited is the South Island's Central Otago, with its granitic soils and continental climate, and the pebbly Brightwater area near Nelson. While Australia's Rieslings tend to be full-bodied & dry, the Kiwis are more inclined to be lighter bodied, more ethereal and sometimes off-dry; Alsace plays Mosel if you like.

The Region

Riesling AOC Alsace

Riesling is the undisputed king of Alsace grapes, covering 22.5 percent of the vineyard area and producing some of the noblest and most age-worthy wines in the region, including Vendange Tardive, Sélection de Grains Nobles, and Grands Crus.

Dry, refined, and delicately fruity, it has an elegant bouquet of citrus fruit with mineral or floral notes. A typical mature Alsace Riesling is bone dry, with steely acidity and complex mineral and flint aromas. Like its German counterpart, it displays a superb definition of flavours, but with more concentration and alcohol.

It thrives on schist, shale and slate soils that convey oily, petrolly, mineral aromas to the wine.

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