Domaines Schlumberger Riesling Grand Cru Kitterlé
The Wine Advocate
September 25, 2015, Stephan Reinhardt
“From sandy clay soils on a pink sandstone bedrock the 2012 Riesling Grand Cru Kitterlé starts with a coolish, aristocratic, precise and very stony/flinty flavor on the nose that is beautifully intertwined with the concentrated white fruit flavors and the herbal and flowery notes of this wine. Very pure, elegant and intense on the palate, this Kitterlé is full of energy and tension plus develops a long and mineral finish. Drink this expressive wine over 20 years, starting not much earlier than 2020.”
With a single holding of more than 330 acres at Guebwiller, Domaines Schlumberger is the largest Grands Crus producer in Alsace. All Schlumberger wines are estate-grown. Seventy-five percent of the vines are planted on very steep, terraced slopes, requiring horses be used for fieldwork.
The outstanding quality of the wines is due largely to Schlumberger’s superior vineyards, but also because yields are deliberately kept low. The winery produces only 80,000 cases annually, while the law allows for up to 160,000.
First distinguished in 1699, Kitterlé has always had an exceptional reputation. Already protected in the Middle Ages, it has been sold under its own name since 1830.
Grown on a unique volcanic sandstone plot on a steeply sloping rocky outcrop facing three ways (south-west, south and south-east). The light, sandy soil, which is kept back by huge drystone walls, only gives very low yields of about 25 to 35 hl/ha. The grapes are picked by hand and whole bunches are pressed. There was a static settling of the lees and the wine is fermented in temperature-controlled tuns, followed by raising on the lees for eight months.
The nose is marked and pleasant, with a deep intensity and aromas of citrus fruits, lemon, orange, spices and ginger. The onset in the mouth is dense, fleshy and compact. The wine evolves in a clean and lively medium, pithy and marked by a sparkling note.
An excellent wine with food, it pairs beautifully with steamed or grilled fish such as steamed turbot and artichoke barigoule, or salmon tartar with olive oil and candied vegetables. Suggested serving temperature is 53°F.
Varietals: 100% Riesling
Wine Alcohol: 13.5%
Titratable Acidity: 4.25
Residual Sugar: 0.9