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French Wine - Wines of Alsace
Alsace grows mainly German grape varieties but, due to the climate and French winemaking tradition, the wines are richer and drier than those of Germany.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
The grapes of Alsace are Riesling, Sylvaner, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, Muscat, and Chasselas.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
Alsacean white wines often share a subtle smoky aroma and an air of utter conviction about the grape variety they articulate.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
New oak is rarely used in Alsace because the purity of fruit flavor is the goal of the region's winemaking.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
Alsacean producers often label their wines with the grape variety from which they're made. If a grape appears on a label of an Alsacean wine, you can be sure the wine is made from 100 percent of that grape variety. This is not the case with many other growing regions.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
About a quarter of all Alsacean wine is Riesling. And an Alsacean Riesling tastes vivacious and steely,ages well, and can be dry or sweet.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
A producer of particularly fine Riesling is Domaines Schlumberger. Its Les Princes Abbes Riesling is extraordinary. Aromas of lime and butterscotch lead to a palate of lime, butter, minerals, and a lovely orange zest character. Beautiful stuff. Dry, crisp, but with excellent concentration, body, and length. Worth every penny and a bargain at about $15.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
If this book had a section for best wines under $25, Domaines Schlumberger's Riesling Saering 2004 would lead the list. It's class in a glass. Basil, pepper, restrained apple, oregano, smoke, white flowers, rhubarb, lime, and the list goes on. Complex, well-toned, long, and capable of maturing admirably.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
Vignobles Charles Koehly makes Riesling sing with the St. Hippolyte 2002 version that exudes flinty aromas from the first whiff, then moves toward fresh lemons and limes before mellowing back into flinty notes and citrus zest. This wine is bracingly crisp with a long finish, balanced structure, and a high thrill factor.

French Wine - Wines of Alsace
Gewurztraminer from Alsace is spelled without the "umlaut" accent—that double dot over the u used in the German spelling. Since Gewurztraminer grapes are pink skinned, the wine can be quite coppery colored in the glass. And Alsacean Gewurztraminer is generally full-bodied, high in alcohol, low in acidity, and tastes of lychees and roses.

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