Alsatian Wine from Two Collectors' Cellars

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One of great masterpieces of western art is in Colmar, in Alsace. So when you visit the region, don't miss taking a trip to see the Isenheim Altarpiece, painted by Mathias Grunewald in 1512-1516. As Michelin likes to say: it's well worth the detour. And they have some wine there too...

** VT = "Vendanges Tardive" = late harvest;

** SGN = "Selection de Grain Nobles" = grape-by-grape harvesting of fruit that's been concentrated by botrytis.

In Alsace these are regulated terms that can only be used when grapes are very high in sugar (and thus potential alcohol). Fruit for SGN is riper than VT.

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Boxler 2005 Alsace Riesling Grand Cru Sommerberg "E"

The "E" cuvee is from the upper slope of Sommerberg, on decomposed granite with mica, usually the more purely mineral of Boxler's Sommerberg rieslings. In 2005 there is a lovely richness to the fruit but the aromas have an aspect of stony acids mingling with the exotic yellow fruits, flowers and lime. Very complex aromas, to describe them would be a bit ridiculous. The palate is dense, but not heavy, round and supple but with good acidity. A gorgeous riesling from a ripe vintage that's delicious now and will age beautifully.

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