"A large part of the tastings over the past week were the wines of Alsace as Senior Editor Stuart Pigott surveys the region. He says that the 2000 vintage in Alsace is one of the best ever for wineries with vineyards that escaped the heat and dryness with isolated thunderstorms in August that refreshed the vineyards.
Stuart came across the first perfect pinot noir we have ever experienced in the region – the Albert Mann Pinot Noir Alsace Grand H 2020. ”For me, 2020 is one of the best vintages I ever made, and for pinot noir reds I think it’s the best we ever had,” Albert Mann winemaker Jacky Barthelme told Stuart.
For Barthelme, who began work at the estate he owns and runs together with his brother Maurice back in 1982, the Alsace Grand H is the result of decades of striving for perfection and a career high point. He switched to maturing his red wines in 225-liter casks in 1991 and extended that maturation from 12 months to 17-18 months in 2009.
It was about then that the pinot noir reds really took off, and we have consistently showered these wines with praise. Domaine Albert Mann makes four single-vineyard site pinot noirs per vintage, and each of the 2020 vintages rated 95 points or above. “We treat every single vine as an individual,” Barthelme said, explaining another crucial aspect of the dedicated hard work that lies behind these wines.
The wine’s unusual name indicates that it comes from the Grand Cru Hengst site, but it is not allowed to carry the site name because it isn’t from one of the approved grape varieties (gewurztraminer, pinot gris, riesling and muscat). That just changed, but for the 2020 vintage it came too late to write Grand Cru Hengst on the label. This 53-hectare site in Wintzenheim has a heavy chalky-marl soil that gives the wines from this south- to southeast-facing slope enormous power."
To read the reste of the review : here
D'autres notes ont été attribuées sur la sélection de nos vins, en voici un extrait
Albert Mann Pinot Noir Alsace Grand H 2019 - Score: 98 Points
Very deep, rooty nose with so many forest-berry aromas, as well as wild herbs. Then a giant wave of earthy power hits you on the expansive palate. Huge concentration, but every bit as much drive. The intense minerality at the finish may be too much for some, but for us this is the full expression of a unique terroir for the pinot noir grape. From vines in the Grand Cru Hengst. From biodynamically grown grapes. More than 50% whole cluster, then matured in 60% new, the rest second use. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Pinot Noir Alsace Les Saintes Claires 2020 - Score: 99 Points
If you doubt the ability of Alsace to challengeBurgundy with pinot noir, then here is the proof that it can. This smells like a whole basket of fresh blackberries, but there's nothing loud about the wine at all. In fact, it is incredibly elegant. Sensational interplay of fruit, fine tannins and lively acidity on the generous yet very precise palate. Very long finish with chalky minerality. From a site just below the Grand Cru Furstentum. 65% whole cluster. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Pinot Noir Alsace Grand P 2020 - Score: 98 Points
The enveloping nose of red fruit, summer flowers and red beets pulls you inexorably into this very concentrated and silky pinot noir. Stacks of very fine tannins power the super-long and intense finish that doesn't want to let go. From vines in theGrand Cru Pfersigberg. 50% whole cluster, then maturation in 60% new oak, the rest second use. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Pinot Noir Alsace Grand P 2019 - Score: 97 Points
Beautiful nose of redplum with hints of pomegranate and fresh fig, but the expansive, concentrated and refined palate is even greater than the bouquet. The substantial fine tannins are wrapped in wonderful ripeness, and the further you follow the wine at the finish the more remarkable it becomes. From vines in the Grand Cru Pfersigberg. 50% whole cluster, then maturation in 60% new oak, the rest second use. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace Altenbourg Vendanges Tardives 2019 - Score: 97 Points
A super-succulent riesling with a generous slug of natural grape sweetness and dangerously energetic acidity that make this feel drier and lighter than it really is. So much tangerine character that it's not easy to take it all in at the explosively long finish. From over 50-year-old vines. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace Grand Cru Eichberg 2020 - Score: 97 Points
Packed to the brim with stone-fruit aromas, this is a very concentrated and structured dry riesling with an imposing stature, but also balance that makes it so welcoming. This will need some time to reveal all its riches, but the complexity is already stunning. Very dry but super-elegant finish. The first vintage of this wine, but the vines are over 50 years old. From organically grown grapes. Drinkable now, but best from 2024.
AlbertMann Gewurztraminer Alsace Grand Cru Steingrubler 2020 - Score: 96 Points
Giant, fresh pineapple and papaya fruit and wonderfully mouth-filling creaminess, backed up by unusually mineral acidity for this grape. And the ample fine tannins underline this beautifully. Super-long and refined finish with hints of hibiscus and guava. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace L'Amplitude 2020 - Score: 98 Points
The essence of riesling, with staggering dried-peach and apricot aromas. So powerful and enveloping, with fantastic balance in spite of the high content of grape sweetness.Enormously deep and complex finish. Only the second vintage of this wine, which belongs to the category the French call Vin de Paille, or straw wine. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Gewurztraminer Alsace Grand Cru Steingrubler 2019 - Score: 96 Points
A super-elegant gewurz that has rich, creamy and caramel notes, but also stunning vitality, thanks to the serious minerality that dominates the wine more and more as it extends into the finish, which is a cascade of rose petals. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace Grand Cru Furstentum 2020 - Score: 96 Points
Beautiful ripe-apricot and orange aromas pour from glass and, on the palate, this makes a bold statement, thanks to the generous fruit and ample body. But this is not just full and ripe. There's also a dark side to the wine, with hints of earthiness and bitterness that really add excitement. Excellent aging potential. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace Grand Cru Schlossberg 2020 - Score: 96 Points
Stunning nose of Amalfi lemon, yellow peach and mirabelle. Very straight and sleek, with serious stony minerality and enough creaminess wrapped around this to prevent the wine from feeling austere at any point. Spot-on balance through the very long and linear finish. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Albert Mann Riesling Alsace Grand Cru Schlossberg 2019 - Score: 96 Points
So many wild-herb aromas that it transports you to a rugged and rocky hillside, where the riesling vine accomplishes the miracle of transforming heat and sun into freshness. Very long and focused, salty finish with cosmic energy. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold.