This is a high-end Gewurztraminer from Hugel. Along with Trimbach, Hugel were never really into the Alsace Grand Cru classification. But although the bottle doesn’t disclose it, this wine is from Grand Cru Sporen, near Riquewihr. You can inspect the terroir here. It has deep clay soils from the Lias era of the Jurassic, and is 90% planted to Gewurztraminer, which thrives here. There’s a bit of marl here, too, and there’s some phosphoric acid in the soils.
Winemaking is quite simple. The grapes are taken in small tubs to the presses. Whole bunch pressing, and then the must is decanted for a few hours. It’s fermented in temperature-controlled vats (18 to 24°C). The wine is racked just once, before natural clarification during the course of the winter. The following spring, the wine is lightly filtered before bottling.
Hugel Gewurztraminer Grossi Laüe 2011 Alsace, France
14.5% alcohol. This is a ‘grand cru’ or ‘grosses gewächs’ equivalent wine. It’s amazingly fresh, despite its age and ripeness, with lovely fresh lychee aromas with lovely purity, and a great concentration with sweet lychee and table grape flavours, nice texture, and good freshness. It’s quite crystalline and finishes quite dry, despite the sensation of sweetness from the alcohol and ripe fruit, and perhaps a bit of sugar. A lovely, complex, textural wine with some precision, as well as a lot of richness. Very fine. 94/100
Here’s Marc Hugel on their various Alsace terroirs:
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