Pinot Gris, Altenbourg, Trie Speciale, Vendanges Tardives, 2008

  Domaine Weinbach

A special selection from within the Altenbourg vineyard of healthy and botrytised grapes, beautiful dried peach and dried apricot fruit with strong overtones of fruit blossom honey and fig jam, excellent, rich but very clear flavours, complex and concentrated but with plenty of vitality too, worth trying with foie gras, aged hard cheese or tart tatin. A Vendanges Tardives that displays a wide spectrum of unique, vivid flavours, truely great.

Contains Sulphites.

About Domaine Weinbach


Named after the “Wine Brook”, a little stream that flows through the estate, Domaine Weinbach was founded by the Capucin monks in 1612. The house is surrounded by the original 9th Century monastic vineyard, the Clos du Capucin and all of the estate’s wines are now labelled with its name. Two Faller brothers acquired the estate in 1898 and this was duly inherited by Théo Faller. Sadly Théo died in 1979 leaving his estate in the safe hands of a Faller Triumvirate: his wife Colette and his two daughters, Cathy and Laurence – who all contributed to the continued development of Théo’s great legacy. Tragically Laurence died in 2014, far too young at just 47. And then under a year later, Colette too passed away. Alsace had lost two of its most important figures in as many years. Today Cathy is joined by her two sons Eddy and Theo, so the outlook for the domaine looks stable. Staggeringly Domaine Weinbach owns 26 hectares of vineyards in the Kaysersberg valley in the Haut-Rhin of Alsace at between 200 to 400 metres above sea level. They grow their vineyards organically with a view to quality rather than quantity and hand pick the grapes. Only their grapes are vinified (unlike many other producers in Alsace who frequently have to buy them in). Ageing is best described as passive, carried out in huge old oak fuders, allowing each vineyard and each specific terroir, along with the other unique characteristics of grape and vintage, to shimmer through these elegant and sophisticated wines.

Appellation: Alsace

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.

Grape Type: Pinot Gris

Pinot Gris is also known as Tokay Pinot Gris in Alsace though the prefix Tokay was dropped to appease the Tokaji Wine governing body in Hungary. This is a slightly spicier and more expressive version of its stablemate, Pinot Blanc, and actually a mutation of Pinot Noir. It is one of the chief dry white varieties in Alsace, but also produces some deliciously sweet, age worthy, late-harvest styles. It is the same grape as northern Italy's Pinot Grigio, Germany's Grauburgunder or Ruländer and Hungary's Szürkebarát and is starting to become fashionable in New Zealand.