|Bottling :||July 2007|
|Acquired alcohol :||15.5°|
|Residual sugar :||11.1 g/l|
|Total acidity :||5.70|
|Yield :||21 hl/ha|
|Optimum tasting :||2011-2021|
|Average age of vines :||37 years|
|Terroir :||Grand Cru Rangen de Thann Clos Saint Urbain|
|Sweetness index :||1|
|Soil :||Sedimentary volcanic rocks (Tuffs & Grauwake), South facing, Steep slope|
Description of the wine Pinot Gris Grand Cru Rangen de Thann Clos-Saint-Urbain 2006
The Pinot Gris took an important place in the Clos Saint Urbain, alongside the Riesling and Gewurztraminer. When my father purchased the vineyards from the Yung family in 1977, there was a large proportion of Pinot Gris, all planted at high density in the early 60’s with incredibly high quality massal selections (opposite of clones). Riesling is the obvious choice in a steep, south facing volcanic hill side, but we discovered that Pinot Gris was also capable to capture the flinty/earthy minerality of this vineyard. The alternance of dry/humid periods and presence of fog during harvest also make it easy for massive botrytis development. In 2006, the botrytis was intense, but like in many other Pinot Gris vineyards, we feared that its influence could be too powerful. We went to harvest the Pinot Gris just before it would be real VT, aiming for a dry wine. The fermentation was fast and powerful, leaving little chance for much residual sweetness in the wine.
1/2008: Not a VT? It is impossible to think differently with this dark gold colour, almost orange and this powerful intense waxy, shoe polish, flinty nose. Most people would swear that this is a very sweet wine, SGN like, but not. The palate is as austere and tight as it can be. It’s like chewing volcanic rocks. Right from their youth, all the Rangen wines had this dark colour. This is not oxidation, it is just the way the terroir decided to express the vintage. The finish feels very dry and powerful, also showing a racy acidity. Extreme vineyard, extreme wine…
The Rangen de Thann is the most southerly of the Alsace vineyards. In his book « Where Alsace wines ripen », Henry Riegert writes: « from the Middle Ages those wines which ripen on the Rangen hillside figure amongst the most famous growths of the whole vineyard region ». The Grand Cru Rangen de Thann, is situated at the exit of the valley, overlooking the village of Thann with the river Thur passing at the foot of the slope.