I suppose some people would think that the world’s best Gewurztraminer would be even more pointless than the best Muscat. I disagree. A wonderful, fruity, floral Gewurz can be a baroque treat of a wine. This one is a really special treat of hilarious compelling wonderfulness.
We are told the Brand Grand Cru is best for Pinot varieties, but it strikes me that the Rieslings and Gewurztraminers can be pretty serious too. Zind-Humbrecht Brand Riesling is often stunning (even though the ZH flame has somewhat died for me). Boxler also makes a very individual Brand Riesling which is a very clear expression of the terroir. It is manifestly one of the top Alsace Grand Crus.
I do recognise the question ‘But when do you drink a wine like this?’ is a pretty good one. It’d be easy to say with cheese, but this one worked a treat as an afternoon drinkie for my chums and me; it’d be a good afternoon drink for you too.
Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Brand Vendanges Tardives 2007, Domaine Albert Boxler
The nose is very floral with rose petals and lychees. There is a rich, earthy complexity to it. Real late harvest candied fruit as well. This charms and excites, I remember my incredible enthusiasm when I first tried this at Boxler; I was right. The palate has lots of fruit, moderate sweetness and a great spicy complexity. It has massive depth and weight, but dances across my palate. Sure, it is large-scale, but not really a fighting wine; there is balance and harmony, elegance and finesse here which raise this to a much higher level of brilliance. Big but stunningly attractive, like having an amorous tussle with the 6’6” tall girlfriend I had at school. She was massive, terribly beautiful and quite, quite bonkers*. Oh yes.
*She used to eat tinned cat food. This wine is merely slightly bonkers and in a less revulsion-inducing manner.