Alsace

Appellations

Perhaps the most important feature of Alsace is the looming presence of the Vosge mountains to the west of the region, a source of shelter from the wind and who's slopes provide the south, south-west and south-easterly facing vineyards which which to make most use of the suns rays. Due to the huge variety of soil types and terroirs to be found in the region Alsacian growers tend to produce a variety of different wines and cuvees from the dry and refreshing to some of the world's richest and most engaging late picked Vendage Tardive wines. Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and Sylvaner are all highly successful and most can and are made to varying levels of sweetness.
Alsace Grand Cru is an Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée for wines made in the Alsace wine region of France. The Grand Cru AOC is the top quality categorisation of Alsace wine that was first recognized in 1975 by Appellation Contrôlée governing body with subsequent expansion in 1983, 1992 and 2007. The wines come from selected sites in the Alsace region, located at altitudes between 200m and 300m. Alsace Grand Cru wines must be produced from yields of 65hl/ha or less and the wine must come from a single named vineyard which will must be listed on the label. Currently 51 named vineyards are listed as Grand Cru, the latest addition being Kaefferkopf of Ammerschwihr in January 2007.