Discover Alsace with Nina Cerullo

I love ischlumberger riesling very good I’m sorry That’s all right got some some lovely Whites going on Uh in the audience this evening yeah we Have Cats excellent good so uh yeah welcome Back to the Next in our series of uh lockdown Webinars Uh while the school wct school london is Is open now for courses we are still Not yet doing tastings so we’re i’m glad To be back Uh with nina for another um Evening event so um format’s going to be Similar to usual we’ve got about an hour Nina’s going to take us through Everything uh we’ll try and leave some Time at the end for questions So if you do just pop them in the chat I’ll be keeping an eye on those as we go Through Um and we’ll have some time to uh to Discuss Later um this will be recorded the Recording will be available On youtube and on our website afterwards So if you want to view it again you can As many times as you like Why wouldn’t you um all right that’s it For me Then nina over to you uh thank you julia Thank you

And welcome everybody else welcome to uh Discover ourselves Uh just uh it’s the the sad thing about These is not being able to actually Ask you questions but um If you haven’t been to alsace then and i Know i’ve got a lot of people there who Are From all over the world so maybe Ourselves isn’t exactly down the road But um it’s one of those places that if You are Into into wine if you’re studying wine If you’re starting to get to know the World of wine It’s one of the regions that it’s it’s Just one of the most important places to Go It had um when you when you get into Wine there’s usually something that sort Of uh Triggers your love for it and when i was I was actually a diploma student back in 2000 And obviously when you’re a student you Try and learn as much as you can and so That was the first time i visited alsace I’d actually been as a child apparently But i don’t remember that so that’s fine Um but i visited in 2000 And it just it’s just one of the most Fresh start it’s one of the most Stunning wine regions In the world and i have been around a

Lot of the wine regions of the world From the top to the bottom it’s just Like a picture postcard Everywhere you go is so so pretty And you just have wine and culture and Gastronomy just shoved at you From every angle it’s just fabulous and It’s And it just even then when i was a Student it Just hit me and i’ve always wanted to Know more about It ever since and i did so you you visit All sorts of places around the world and You get to know Wine regions but there are only a few Usually which really Sort of sink home with you burgundy is One of those for me And alsace is another and i just have Always wanted to know more and Have never been disappointed when i’ve Gone the only disappointment i’ve ever Had about Our sas is that i continuously tell Students that it’s one of the warmest Driest places in france And every single time i’ve gone it’s Rained and i don’t know why But it just has so that’s the only Disappointment it’s just if you get a Chance And you haven’t been it is one of the Wine regions i would

Absolutely truly recommend that you Visit and i promise i don’t work for the Alsace tourist board i promise um right Uh julia can we move can we have the First slide please Um just for those of you who maybe don’t Know exactly where alsace is Um i’m sure a lot of you do but just for Those who don’t but we are Um so i just want to get rid of these How do i do that That’s better okay so um just those You don’t know where it is it is in the Northeastern corner of france And that’s quite significant where it Actually sits it’s right on the border With germany so you can see You can just about see on the map in the Middle you can see the rhine river which Is just sits to the east Of the vineyard area and it’s that is The border With germany is is the rhine uh river so You can see how close it is to germany And In fact throughout this throughout this Session we’ll talk much about The german influence with the wines with The great varieties With the culture and it is one of those Areas where There is a very close relationship with Germany here And it’s not surprising because it’s

Very very close if you go across the Rhine you End up in the black forest of germany And in fact A lot of along the slopes of the black Forest you get a lot of vineyards But producing very similar style wines To those that you find over here in our South so And in fact i know we’re not doing Germany today but if you ever do visit Our sas It’s actually a lovely thing to do to go Across Into germany and to explore those Vineyards and the vineyards of the Kaiser stool and Around there because it’s also very very Beautiful and beautiful beautiful wines Anyway That’s digressing slightly so we’re up In the northeastern corner of France and that would immediately make You think that perhaps it’s a little bit Cooler up here And we will go more into climate later But in fact one of these Extraordinary things about our sas is Its climate And if you look where it sits you can Just about see that we have The verge mountains to the west Of the region now you can you can see I’ve got a map behind me

Can everybody see the map behind me can You just give me a thumbs up thank you Uh so the map you can see the voge Mountains very clearly on there now The voge mountains are very important Part of Why we can make such good wine here in Alsace So that is the geography of those verge Mountains is very very important Uh history is also extremely important Here in assassi It has historically been a real mix Okay it’s if you go right back to sort Of roman times and in fact they we Believe that in fact Vineyards were actually or grapes were Planted pre Pre-roman but it was probably the romans Which really sort of cultivated The grape for wine production um after The romans then We’ve had periods of sort of extreme Wealth Poverty but it’s actually a relatively Always been a relatively wealthy part Of northeastern france which back then Was Mainly usually german autonomous for Several Years for several hundred years back to Germany after the franco german war And then back 50 years it’s like 50 Every 50 years isn’t

To change over the month they’re almost Due and so Back to um france after world war one Now that’s The period when perhaps winemaking here Really have made a change because Previous uh previously that when it was Mainly german This was a period of It was a big area for growing grapes for The german market And in fact The german market great grain was very Different to that of france france is Very much Winemaking for gastronomy but whereas Um in germany it was just wine making Just to make wine and Germany make some of the finest wines in The world so i’m not going to say Anything bad about them But this wasn’t it this was an area of Let’s just grow grapes And a lot of crossings some of them Which still remain But it was a very different area as far As quality was concerned it wasn’t seen As a quality Area for great growing and wine Production It was after the first world war the When the french sort of decided to bring Back What are considered to be the noble

Varieties those which are Very good for producing wines which go Well with food which is obviously how The french live When the vineyards started to be planted Again it went back to germany briefly In the second world war but after that It moved back to france And i suppose you could say it was from That point on when real Quality cultivation started so it went To the point where All the grapes that were going to be Grown were grown For the reason of producing a quality Grape for equality wine For gastronomy so that was really when Things started to make a big change Interestingly we think of ourselves Being french so it’s obviously got a lot Of history But you can pretty much fairly say that It was after world war Ii when this region started to be as you See it today So the great varieties we have there the Traditions that we have there with Wine production are relatively new Compared to Other wine producing regions all over France This is something and and because of That some of the laws especially some of The wine laws

Are still changing there are still Things happening every year there are Discussions Every year about changing local laws Changing wine laws whether or not we Should move forward move back Introduce certain great varieties change The laws about Grand cru premier crew etcetera these Are still changing Because this is a relatively new wine Production Area as we see it today Um julie would you mind moving on please Okay so uh we have here The favorable climate and i genuinely i Can’t stress it enough apart from If don’t ever go there with me because If you go there with me it’ll rain But in the majority of the times you Will visit alsace it will be dry it is One of the driest regions in the whole Of france Apart from there’s a region some regions In provost this is uh The second driest capital city kolmar Um so it is extremely dry and that Obviously has an effect On the grape growing So the vineyards are protected and they Are protected by the version if you Again Look at the map behind me you can see How clearly

Especially in the lower the more Southern part of our sas It actually it’s much much wider the Mountains go much much further Uh west than you see here on this map Because it doesn’t cover it all Further north we have less protection But in the south specif Especially that it’s very very deep very Wide And very high and because of that you Can see on the on the Map on the screen that that the rain all Falls before it hits the vineyards So very very little rain it’s a Continental to semi-continental climate So it’s very warm during the day and it Can get very cold at night Also because we are quite far north in In france in that sort of northeastern Corner of france It can get really very cold in the Winter so we have quite extremes of Temperature here and that has an effect On the grapes on how they grow that big Temperature variation between day and Night during the growing season Slows down the ripening of the grape and You end up with much more intense Flavors In those grapes and that is something That when you get to know alsace The more you drink it it’s those intense Flavors which

Really really stand out this is one of Those Places where if you’re wanting to get to Know great varieties and how does a Grape actually taste how does What does riesling actually taste of What does pinot gris taste of What does pinot noir taste of what does Um etc you Alsace is the perfect place to taste These wines Because they are so intense in flavor And aromas and very very very little if Ever Maybe sometimes with pinot noir will There be any new wood used so you’re Just tasting the grape and the soils That it’s been grown on But the climate is very very important You can see from Uh the the structure in front of you This is the little graph in front of you How the alsace vineyard was created if You can imagine that you have a black Forest there On the east and you have the verge there On the west Zillions and zillions of years ago this This was just pushed Up pushed up pushed up pushed up and Then at some point the middle bit Just collapsed so that’s what happened To the alto alsace that’s how it was Created

And then glacial movement basically took Away What was in there afterwards and ex and That glacial movement And the collapse produced this Complete sort of a checkerboard of Effect of Vineyards so you have these exposed Different rock types different soil Types Throughout the whole of alsace and again Having Those really very clean fruit flavors Here because of the climate And then tasting them coming from those Different exposed soil types and Bedrocks Is what makes this region so so special Because you Just every single glass of wine tastes Slightly different and it’s a it’s an Absolute joy to And i’m not saying that you have to be There to taste these things but if you Can Ever get a chance to actually get lots Of different Wines from alsace maybe of the same Grape variety from the same vintage And taste those that have been grown on The different soils It’s quite extraordinary it’s one of the Most fascinating And delicious grapes can you tell that i

Quite like it the wines from here But it is it’s one of the most Fascinating regions as far as learning About grape varieties is concerned Because Of this climate and because of this Structure these geological structures Uh julia thank you so talking about Soils because like i just said that Collapse Of the those mountains and The the uh glacial movement afterwards Has exposed all these different Soils and it is um if you’re a geologist If you’re a geologist A student of geology you probably find Our sas As exciting if not more exciting than Somebody who’s studying wine because it Is from top to bottom A complete like i said a checkerboard of Soils You can be in one vineyard and from the Top to the bottom you’ll have Three different soil types and then the Bedrock will be slightly different It’s quite extraordinary and because of That The great varieties that you plant on These soils Has to be very specific certain great Varieties Love certain soil types other great Varieties

Really dislike their soul types or Perhaps don’t ripen particularly well on Them So it is it is one of the one of the Challenges of All alsace producers is rather than to Sort of like say okay i just want to Grow riesling You actually have to look at what soils You have and make a decision What is the best grape variety to put on The soil that i actually have So rather than just saying i’m going to Make this wine because it’s All very fashionable at the moment you Really do have to look at what you’ve Got in the vineyard And grow the correct grape variety on What you have got there Um as you can see there there are lots Lots of different types granite volcanic Sandstone limestone milestone These are all they give different Aromatics They give different maturation levels They Speed up or slow down the ripening Of the grapes and so once again you have To be careful that you are Planting the right grape just as an Example If you’ve got a very cool soil for Example like If you have a limestone soil which is

Very cool And it’s not a particularly warm Sight maybe you don’t get the sun on it All day planting riesling would be Risky because you need riesling takes a Long time to ripen it It takes a long time from budding right Through to ripening and it has to be on That vine a long time If it’s not warm enough the cool Alkaline soils Will slow the ripening down so if you Don’t have very Warm climate around you then those Rieslings will not ripen in time Before the rains and the rock sets in so You do Really have to be very careful and and You can it also as a producer you off Producers often have a particular style So you may Like your wines always fermented Completely dry with lots of acidity So if you’ve got a limestone sauce that Will suit your Style particularly well so you can see How it can all make A big difference the vineyard have to Tell you a little story about the Vineyard at the bottom Is uh is the grand cru rangan datan Which Is one of the most southerly points of Right down here of uh of the arslas

Vineyards And that picture i was taken uh when i Was there with sarah rowlands a couple Of years ago We were actually at the bottom of the Vineyard and we said let’s climb up The vineyard and take some pictures sort Of from the middle and well I started to try try to climb this is a Volcanic vineyard so you’ve got these Dark Dark soils started trying to climb and i Got up about three meters And turn around to sarah and said this Isn’t going to happen it was so steep And the the rocky the volcanic soils Were just collapsing beneath my feet And you just have to give them sort of Like huge Huge admiration that they actually work These vineyards That somebody actually has to do the Pruning of these vineyards and pick the Grapes And toad the soy sauce you just think oh My goodness it was It’s such a steep vineyard and there are A lot of vineyards like that in our size Extreme conditions for for growing Vines i promise you um if you um If you’re interested in getting an Overview of How some of the vineyards look for From as far as steepness is concerned so

It gives you an idea of the conditions That you have there Uh there is um a video on Um it’s domain It’s domain dot no it’s domain forward Slash video And you you can they’ve got like a drone I think flying over The grand cru of kitteling and uh Kessler and It really gives you a really good idea Of how extreme some of the vineyard Slopes are in assassin You just kind of think they’re Absolutely mad they’re bonkers But this is where the best soils the Best soils are found Are on these steep slopes as soon as you Get Off the slopes you get off the foothills Of the voge You come down into the plane and there You really have a Quite deep alluvium twice towards the Edge of the slopes you may have Some sort of gravelly alluvium but as You go Closer and closer to the river you get Much deeper alluvium and there And because it’s flat it’s not ideal for Producing High quality grapes in fact most of the Vines which grow Down on the

Plane will probably be used for the Production of criminal Deltas because they never quite reach The rightness levels that we find That we find on those uh on the slopes And i just somebody just asked me a Question Have a look at it later okay so that Just is really important that for those Of the students amongst you especially If you’re doing diploma it’s It’s really helpful to actually get There Or to sort of taste these wines with Having come from the different soils Bearing in mind those steep steep slopes And how That can really affect the ripening of The grapes Um julia thank you So just um i didn’t want to spend too Much time in harvesting and winemaking Because it’s not particularly Complicated here in our sas Almost all of those grand cru sites and The sites on the slopes are almost all Of them peaked by hand because As you just saw and as i just explained Very difficult conditions almost Impossible to actually Pick these grapes with machine there as You get again once you get to the bottom Of the slopes You can use machine and certainly on the

Plane they’re using machines but in General most of the best wines Are hand-picked and principally because You do not want to damage those grapes It’s Really important that to keep those Extraordinary Aromatics that we get in our elsa’s Wines Is to not damage that grape until it Gets to the winery So once they are actually in the winery They’re pressed Uh almost never d stemmed now in our Stats i’ve no I haven’t actually ever seen these Stemming but i think perhaps they used To do it i’m not sure why Uh they press very very gently i’ve seen I’ve been in wineries and i’ve they’ve Said that So if you can just imagine the the Film’s presses for example Uh putting the grate in there and Pressing which is going on for two to Four hours Per per per tank and then i’ve gone into Other wineries where it’s been six to Eight hours And another winery has been up to 12 Hours for one pressing So extremely gentle pressing giving the Grape Giving that juice time to actually sit

With the skin for a little while which Takes More flavor and actually you get a Little bit better acidity At the end with that very very very slow Pressing so Very very slow pressing clarification That fermentation is pretty normal apart From some of the sweet wines that we Find in our sauce so Some of those which are very high in Sugar and some of those can take Weeks and weeks and weeks months and Months and months if not A year and even longer so very slow you Go past the Those big these are called the food you Can see the picture at the bottom of the Food You go past the food and you you stand Next to it and you just hear this And that’s one that’s just one bit of Fermentation And then like half a minute later There’s another oh and it’s fabulous And so very very very slow fermentation Uh malolactic for those of you who are Learning about malolactic It is used quite regularly here in our Stats because Uh there are a traditionally quite a lot Of acidity in Alsace wine because of the because of The climate

So we have a lot of acidity and Malalactic is often used In giveaway though it’s almost never Used So there may be the occasion where given Stramina has been grown On those cold acidic soils in a Cool on a cool site you may need some Malolactic but That would probably be only the you know That’s an extreme and it’s not the norm Yvette’s tremendous grape has naturally Low acidity levels and it also has a Very short Picking window from the point where the Grape is Is is um phenolically mature so ready to Be picked And if you don’t pick that grape in the Next few days The acidity levels can drop like a stone So it’s very important That where you where you plant given Stramina and when you pick it And it’s the acidity is essential one of The biggest Um oh well uh problems i’d say with Giveaway And alsace is when it has been grown on A site where the acidity level has been Allowed to drop And you end up with a wine which is well Flabby not particularly exciting flavors Would maybe be there but you just don’t

Get the structure you lose the structure And you just don’t make the most out of The wine that’s one of the biggest Problems they give us stramina has here In our sas Warm days leaving the grape too long in The vine city levels drop And that’s usually going to be the less Expensive wine it has to be said That top producers tend to be very good At making sure they pick their givers From At the right time and just a little bit About the fudra For example that you can see they’re Left on the left Stainless steel is completely normal as Are these large Fudra it’s very unusual in our sas to See Oak as in a barrique and even more Unusual to see new oak Because the only time you would probably Use that is it In pinot noir production and there’s Only about ten percent of grapes are Pinot noir And because they tend to be on the Lighter side the chances of them Using a new oak are really quite small So barik you may find if you’re making a Pinot noir but it’s very unlikely to be Newer the rest of the wine Is made from in the larger food or in

Stainless steel Uh just uh just to comment on this one Here this is miguel’s winery And where he has which is underground And i remember when i was there i asked Him i said um How do you get these food into this Winery because it’s underground and the Door is the same size as your standard Door to go in and out of it And he said they they have to be brought In in pieces and made Actually in the cellar underground and Some of these Are well over 100 years old they’ve been There forever And of course he probably saw the look On our faces and he said no don’t worry If If ever any of the food just start to Degenerate you start to notice a bit of A problem you just you take its pieces Down in the cellar and replace the bit Which needs to be replaced and then put It all back together again so it is Quite an extraordinary Quite extraordinary but like i said Before i don’t work for the outside Tourist board But the um the wineries in our sauce are Worth a visit In itself and i’m sorry to those of you Who at the other end of the world and Can’t get to see them

Look at watch some videos and have a Look because it’s they’re quite quite Beautiful very very special places Uh just a note on the bottle there on The right and this is your classic Alsace bottle obviously Traditionally coming from the germanic Part of the history Of our sas and uh they they like it and In fact I remember sort of 20 years ago so when There was a lot of Discussion about how germany the wine Market in germany was really quite Down and they had a bit of a reputation For being all the wines are a certain Style and alsace was what if you could Almost say tainted by the style of the Bottle so you’d have a lot of people who They’re in a wine merchant and they just Bypass the assassi bottle because they Assume it’s german wine and so they Think it’s going to be Sort of medium dry medium alcohol and Not realizing This completely different um completely Different wine in the bottle so You’d i have you know praise to them for Sticking to their guns and sticking with The assassin flute bottle like that It’s now recognizable i think people are Starting to understand and recognize That Alsace and german wines are really

Usually Quite quite different julia thank you So we um grape varieties Uh we know how i was saying at the Beginning that um If you want to learn about grape Varieties and how they taste okay they Don’t grow Every grape variety here but once they Do grow alsace Is a fabulous place to learn what a Great Actually physically tastes of because They They really are very very expressive Here so you really do Learn how they taste they’re very clean You get All the aromas and all the flavors you Pick up acidity Depending on the soils that you’re on it Is fascinating to Taste and learn about grape varieties i Would say Choose our sass to learn about grape Varieties and the first one i’ve got Here Is muscat now i can probably Guarantee and please put in the chat if I’m wrong That most of you have never had an Alsace muscat Now it’s very tiny production as less Than three percent now

Of alsace vineyards on muscat and it’s Partly i think because it just doesn’t Fit with today’s Style of wine how people think they want You know what What how they drink their wines what They drink them with Muscat alsace moscow is always dry and It’s Always a surprise when people taste Alsace muscat when i’ve used it In tastings you always get You often get a bit of a mixed reaction Uh Most people go oh my god that’s amazing And then you do Have oh well done somebody has tried yes Jinback’s musket Is very good it’s an absolute perfect Example Of how elsa’s muscat tastes as is Well done i’m very happy that you tried Them but very few people have and There is an assumption amongst most Consumers And wine even students that muscat Assassinate is going to be sweet It’s not it’s always fermented dry It does in fact go well particularly Well with asparagus with a sauce over The top of it it works particularly well But even better i think it’s the perfect Grape To drink i don’t know where you are in

The world and what the Conditioned weather conditions are at Moment but here in south south of England It’s a lovely day it’s a lovely evening And now would be a perfect time To open a bottle of dry elsa’s muscat And drink it as an imperative instead of A glass of crema or something So it is if i could give homework my Homework is That you go out and find a bottle of Alsace muscat And try it bearing in mind that it Doesn’t go with Every food type because of the it has Quite distinctive Aromas and flavors it really does you Know we make wine out of grapes so you Think we’d be happy when A wine smells a taste of grapes um and Muscat really does smell and tastes Grapes if you ever want to know Even in sweet muskats how to recognize Muscat as a great variety Then this is this is a really good place To try it Um yes so that’s my homework for you i Always like to give really good homework It’s a great aperitif absolutely Brilliant now the next great that you’ve Got on there is pinot blanc And oksawa we pronounce the x in our sas Pinoblong oksawa now this is a

I don’t want to go too much into this Because it can become a little bit Confusing but Just to confuse you If you say if you see pina blanc and Alsace pinot blanc The chances are it’s not all pinot blanc Or it could be no pinot blanc at all So there you go confused you enormously Already So pinot blanc and oksawa are two Different grape varieties But they are they are bunched together So if a wine label says pinot blanc It is allowed to have oaks or white in There and it can Even have a hundred percent oxide in There If it says oxalia on the label it has to Be oxalia in the bottle So if you’re really confused i apologize But pina blanc in alsace Means that it is a wine made from pinot Or oak saw or and oksawa so when i say Made from pinot it can actually also be Pinot gris And pinot noir but so it is really just Pino And oksawa so the blog would be pinot Noir without using the skin so there you Go completely confused you But most of the pinot blond wines You find in alsace are a blend of pinot Blanc

And oksawa so the two together they have Quite distinctive Uh flavors and mouthfeels the two great Varieties which is what makes them Go so well together pinot blanc on its Own Can be not bland particularly but it can Be lacking a little bit In in some character from certain sites But The oaksaw has such different characters This really spicy finish to it and it’s Really quite full bodied you put that With the freshness Of the pinot blanc you just have a Really good Bunch together wine the acidity is Usually good in both More so in the pinot blanc and as they Age and they age really Really quite well over a few years you Start to get some beautifully sort of Candied fruits But it keeps the spice so um People often sort of put it into a box Of you know not particularly important But i think as a Food wine and if you’re if you’re sort Of trying to look for a food wine to go With anything quite frankly because if You think about What i have described it freshness Acidity Body spice fruit that pretty much goes

With anything So it really does make a really good Food wine and it’s this kind of bottle Of wine You can always have in your fridge and Whatever you’re having for dinner You can pull it out and it will work so It’s a it’s actually i think Again undervalued as a as A wine that we drink we don’t think About it but it works really very very Well almost Always completely dry so that’s another Piece of homework two lots of homework On one night It’s often the base for cremonda because It Has really good acidity in there sorry Just reading some of the um Reading some of the uh comments coming Up uh cremonda Uh now this is i haven’t got a big page On criminal but Um the criminal is pretty more criminal And also Produced than anywhere else than Champagne but other than champagne so A lot of production 25 of the production Of our sas wines is criminal And i can’t remember the exact history But i believe that it was The champagne producers who came to Alsace Because it was closer to germany so they

Brought their grapes and their Winemaking History to alsace so that they could Actually Feed their champagne to the alsace to The german market And it just very quickly worked out that It’s a great place For producing great varieties for making Criminal wines Now for those of you who don’t know what Criminal is Anything which says criminal on the Label in france Is a sparkling wine using the classic Method the champion the champagne method Of producing sparkling wine So the second fermentation in the bottle So if you see crema it is A champagne or a classic method of Sparkling wine Just using the um varieties that we have Here in our sauce so You can use riesling pinot gris pinot Noir Pina blanc very few people use gibbet Stramina And you are also allowed to use Chardonnay for production of crema but You can’t use chardonnay For the production of a still wine not In an aoc Alsace wine i hope that’s hope that’s Clear

Um silva now just a little note on Silver and i’ve popped it down at the Bottom there It’s the kind of wine that always tastes Wonderful when you’re sitting in a cafe On Outside a shop or outside a restaurant In alsace on the side of the road And they bring out a jug or they’re Giving you a glass of silvana from the Tap And it always tastes perfect there i’m Always slightly disappointed in it when I’ve Opened it here at home and i think it’s Partly because i When i think of alsace wines i think of Wines with so much flavor and so much Aromatic character that i think sylvana Disappointed me a little bit but it is When you’re in alsace and you’re just Sitting down and having a tart flambe Which is like a An als nice version of a pizza uh sort Of A glass of silver is just perfect so you Know it has its place And it’s cheap because it grows very Easily lots of yield from the vine So easy cheap to make and it makes very Good Easy easy drinking white wine So when you go there you probably drink Quite a lot of it

Okay uh julia thank you So uh now pinot gris that’s what i’m Having for my dinner tonight with my Well i’ve got to chill it down first and Josh mayer’s uh pinot gris Very nice with my crispy duck that i Have dinner so Peanut agree as a great variety you will Know it probably As pinot grigio um Trust me they are very very there’s Nothing There’s no well there is a relationship Obviously and in fact we shouldn’t not Pee negrige completely because it is Really it’s where you’re growing How you produce it which makes it what It is if you go up into altogether into The Um into the alps in northeastern italy They make some of the most Divine pinot grigios which are very Similar in in many ways to those that we Have here in our sas But as a great variety it makes some of The richest wines And the flavors and aromas that you get Here you pick up aromas in pinot gris That you really struggle it doesn’t have Massive Aromas in some parts of the world being Agree but here it Always has these extraordinary exotic Aromas to it

And the smoky uh aromas that you Sometimes get I’ve never really picked that up Anywhere else it can be a Little bit of a problematic great so it Needs to be you need to be very careful Where it’s planted But for me i suppose probably it’s this Sweeter Peanut green which i believe are some of The finest wines In the world you can see there i’ve got A glass of schlumberger’s Uh van wanders teddy pinogray and And foie gras i don’t know if people are Happy about eating foie gras but The two those two things together Genuinely Should just be would be one of the last Things i had could if i had a choice That i would eat Because it’s just divine so and they Make superb table wines so they Because they have this beautiful body Lovely aromatics And it they go from everything from very Dry and crisp Through to very full bodied and still Dry through to a full bodied with some Sweetness Through to full bodied and very sweet But still retaining acidity and that is The key they make Very very good wines right across the

Board so you could have A pinot gris with a plate of sea bass Or you can have pinot gris with foie Gras or with Some white meats or even some sort of Like a veal sort of like a Light red meat or um game So you can see how as a great variety it Works particularly well At the table and it’s why i think the French particularly like Pinot gris and why wine lovers love it At the table it’s Particularly good to drink with food And uh i still yes in home breaks peanut Butter yes absolutely I completely agree uh pinot noir here Um this is interesting pinot noir Because It was always traditionally because it’s Not one of the noble grape varieties now The noble grape varieties muscat Pinot gris riesling and giveaway and These are the four Great varieties which are allowed to be Planted on grand cru Sites now you’re allowed to plant Anything on a grand cru site But you just won’t be able to call the Wine or grand cru unless you plant those Four varieties Now pinot noir because of that Was often not planted on the grand cru Sites because you can’t

Actually sell the wine as a grand cru if You plant pinot noir so Traditionally in the last few decades Pinot noir has probably been planted In sites which don’t necessarily suit it Because You want it on those perfect warm slopes To get the best rightness from it but Does it really make financial sense when You can Put a pinot grigio stromino riesling and Sell it for more money On those slopes because you can then Sell it as a grand cru So there has been a lot of pinot noir Produced on slopes Where it perhaps wasn’t particularly Suitable there are a few producers Who’ve gone against the grain and Planted pinot noir on the grand cru Sites And maybe put something on the label to Give you a clue That it is a grand cru but they can’t Actually use the word grand cru On the label with pinot noir in the Bottle This is one of the um The aspects of the change of laws which Is being discussed So i don’t know whether it’ll happen Whether it’ll happen the next five years Ten years If it ever happened at all but there is

Discussion about possibly allowing pinot Noir To be planted on grand cru sites and Being allowed to call it a grand cru Because it’s a very high quality grape Variety so it does produce Beautiful wine in el sass over the last Few decades we’ve seen a Big increase in the quality of pinot Noir Partly because of global warming so Whereas before it wouldn’t necessarily Always ripen Because it wasn’t planted in the warmest Soils Or on the best sites but in the last few Years we’ve seen the effect of global Warming Pinot noir is ripening much more easily So you’re actually getting very good and I say Very good pinot noir from alsace now and Even from sites which are not grand Precise so if there’s a Um sorry i can’t read what that says About burgundy Very different compared to burgundy so They’re not the same It’s like a if you could compare pinot Noir Um the flavors that you get here if you You think oregon and you think burgundy And Alsace is somewhere in the middle so

They used to be a little bit rustic But as whereas now because they are Becoming much riper and because of the Soils we have in our sas They do give a different character here Than they give In burgundy but i think one thing that Is Fair to say that the top pinot noir here And some of them are extremely fine You’re looking at probably 30 euros Bottle Now 30 euros a bottle in burgundy For the top quality wouldn’t even get You a village wine So you’re looking at perhaps some of the A future absolutely big future for pinot Noir and assassin if i was going to Invest That might be where i’d invest it’s like In planting a pinot noir vineyard on a Top site because i think it’s going to Have A big future here with global warming And the way it’s the way the world is Going the way that people love pinot Noir i think it has A great future here julia thank you Okay so uh give us stramina so Everybody’s favorite or not it’s one of Those Great branches that you either love it Or you’ve just not Tasted the right wine that’s how i

That’s how i put it In i think is one of the is one of the Most beautiful wines in the world Uh and i and i mean that because i think It’s often It’s i think it’s often Not described wrongly or you you’ve Maybe tasted one that isn’t the right Maybe the right quality level I do think that um when it’s when it’s Made Dry and it’s full bodied and it has this Beautiful structure The elegance and the finesse that you Can get in a really top Giveaway stramina from outside is one of The most beautiful wines you’ll ever Drink Unfortunately quite a lot of it is grown On the plane in our sas And so a lot of the sort of certainly Entrance level wines that you might find From some of the co-ops Maybe don’t give the best expression of Giveaway now and Like i was talking about before they can Be a little bit flabby if you lose that Acidity so this is one place that i Would Absolutely um suggest That you pay a little bit more for your Giveaway enough from From the top producers from a good site Because

They really do give back a hundred fold The aromas that you pick up in giveaway The body that you get the acidity the Structure The aging ability it just can make some Of the most extraordinary wines it’s the Kind of wine that you sit And you discuss with the person that You’re sitting with you can’t help it Because they are so beautiful and they Give So much back uh just a little note that You can see on there I think somebody did put it down there It was in humbrecht Uh give it to me i’m not sure if i know That was the pinot gris But uh the giveaway from rangan from the Grand cru rangan Uh where the very steep slope that i Couldn’t climb up because it was too Sleek steep Uh perhaps one of the most the finest Wines i’ve ever tasted in my life And what you get back is just Is extraordinary it’s just the acidity Levels that need to be Very need to be careful they Are traditionally dry in alsace because It is the wines made by the french to go With food and they go particularly well With spicy Foods especially on the sort of um asian Side so chinese thai

Those that often have a little bit of Sweetness to them they go particularly Well One thing we have seen however in the Last few years because again because of Global warming Is more and more giveth straminas with Residual sugar So um and there’s you you can’t It’s a bit of a sort of like love it or Hate it thing because some people Say you cannot have give up stromina 14 and a half percent alcohol And still retain elegance in the wine But if you leave the residual sugar There then Actually d are you taking off the edge Of that acidity the structure which is Really necessary And yet you have other producers who say If you’ve grown the grape properly and You’ve been restricted with your yields You can pick that given streaming a Little bit earlier when it still has the Acidity It will still have those flavors and Then you can ferment it through to dry But we have seen in the last decade or So An increase in residual sugar in gliver Stromina so it is one of those things That you will As you taste these wines you’ll start to Get to know how

These give estradis taste one thing i Will say Is that i’ve had both i’ve had them Completely bone dry And i’ve had them with the residual Sugar And you can still drink those wines with Food that’s what’s quite extraordinary For example If you have that thai curry and you have A giveaway now with 14 15 residual sugar it actually works Perfectly well but i suppose the only Thing is that you would often say that The french In general want their wines to have no Much much lower amounts of residual Sugar and Maybe over the years we will start to Find other grape varieties being grown Pinot noir for example perhaps on sites Which are now Where you have the giveaway now which is Often on a bit of marley clay So maybe they will be more suitable for Pinot noir it’s it’s all Changing it’s a like i said it’s a Relatively new region so we are learning All the time What makes the best wines which soils Make the best wines and Global warming is changing everything Unfortunately So yeah lovely anyway and uh

Julia please thank you And riesling of course so riesling Is perhaps the great variety when you Think of our sass you think It’s is it all about riesling um no it Isn’t But it’s got to be up there hasn’t it With being some of the most divine wines You’ve ever tasted in your life People think of riesling and you again Whether this is a A generation thing but i know from my my Two Children who aren’t children anymore if I said the word reasoning to them they Would immediately even though they’ve Grown up with me They would immediately think of a medium Sweet wine probably german And it’s not something they would ever Think of buying And if you give them a dry riesling from Our sass from a good vineyard They are always blown away because the Flavors The structure that you get in a good Riesling from alsace is like nothing Else on earth it is [Music] Very very wet very very terroir And orientated you can really feel And taste the terroir in the alsace Rieslings So if you ever want to learn how

Riesling is affected by soil and by Climate It’s one of the things that you know if You did a tasting with lots of different Rieslings From the same vintage from different Soil types different terroir within It’s extraordinary it’s one of those Extraordinary tastings where you Actually can taste the difference of the Soils In the wine you can taste whether or not It was volcanic you can taste whether or Not it was limestone you can taste If it was clay and mal if you told Well this was picked in late september This was picked in Late october you can tell the difference It’s quite Extraordinary being able to learn about The riesling grape From alsace and i i know i keep saying It but If you ever get to go there you it’s You’ll be blown away by tasting the Difference That riesling makes grown on one one Soil type To another soil type the date the Difference of vintage makes The difference the climate the Microclimate of a particular vineyard Makes It is quite extraordinary like i say

Again Usually fermented through to dry but Like is that again Because of global warming we are seeing Some wines with a bit of residual sugar In them But because riesling has naturally very Very high acidity You sometimes find that even when There’s residual sugar You can’t feel it i remember when i was There last time And we were at zinhumbrecht and we were Tasting these wines Which we were tasting and trying to work Out the amount of residual sugar in some Of these wines and there was one in Particular and i can’t remember which Particular one It was olivia would would know um i i Sort of we both said oh god three Three grams liter four grams liter and This one had 19 Grams in it but because it had this Extraordinary acidity this extraordinary Structure You couldn’t feel the sugar at all and In fact this Moves on to one of the problems that is Coming with People recognizing how can we Sell a wine as dry when there is Residual sugar in there How can we recognize whether a bottle

Has got residual sugar in it And one of the things that is in Discussion in our sas with the laws at The moment Is putting a a little slide on the back Of the label telling you whether the Wine is Dry or sweet and it sort of goes from One to five i think it’s saying whether It’s dry or sweet They’re talking about whether that Should be made the law that has to be on There So that consumers know what is in the Bottle But i remember that um at zinhumbrecht They said the problem with that Is that actually if we’ve had to put This wine down as Sort of three out of five and you tasted It it doesn’t taste sweet It tastes dry so it is It’s one of those things we’re going to Have to watch and see what happens i Think Uh but it is like all the other grape Varieties we’re seeing a little bit more Residual sugar riesling as a great Variety Is one of those varieties that gives Back so much with Age as well if you can leave these wines To age It ripens late it has a long long

Maturation period So the longer you can keep it on that Vine the more you will get back from the Grape variety And as there’s a little note there about How a lot of the best sites are the warm Sides So the great ripens before the rain and The rocks set in But you have a very very steep slope so You have perfectly ripe grapes But you do also get really beautiful Rieslings on limestone But it’s important that if you have got Your riesling on a limestone site That it has a naturally warm Microclimate So that there is something else other Than the soil which helps to ripen the Riesling So that you do end up with a grape which Is right when it’s picked But they are some of the wines which age The best some of those with the really High acidity From the limestone soil they also make Extremely fine Sweet wines bit of a tartan there at the Bottom Absolute perfection with uh riesling as Is If you think about fish goes Particularly well with riesling Any of the asian foods go particularly

Well with riesling It’s basically a perfect perfect food Wine Um julia thank you So um just a little bit on the alsace Aoc and like i’ve mentioned it a few Times Since i started talking about how things Are changing Are they changing we’ll see but uh there Have been some changes Uh the grand cru of our sas is only four Percent of production so a tiny tiny Production Of of um of the wine is grand cru And there there is more than four Percent of the vineyard is grand cru one Of the problems that alsace has Is that when the grand cruise were given Which just started back in 1975 And it finished only a few years ago so There has been a long period of choosing The grand cru site the problem is There was a generalization that each Village should have a grand cru So some of the grand cru aren’t perhaps At Pure grand cru level and there are Several producers Who will not use their grand cru Vines to make a grand cru wine because They don’t see it as A grand cru level wine but there are Other producers who

Are going to take advantage of the fact That they have a grand cru vines And they will make a grand cru white Even if the wine isn’t particularly Grown crew level So it’s a little bit sort of you know Should this be reassessed I don’t think it will be but you know There are a lot of people that think Maybe it should be reassessed Should there should the grand cru be Divided into two You know sort of like premier grand cru To make the Very best of the grand cru more Particular What we’re seeing now probably is it’s It’s very much based on price So some of the top ground crew are very Very expensive And then if if chances are if the wine Isn’t particularly expensive Chances are it’s not from the best grand Cru site or it’s maybe from The lower slopes of a grand cru site Which certainly don’t make the same Quality level That they make further up the slope so It’s but it’s early days you consider This is a really Recent um these change of laws grant is Very very recent So if things will possibly change over The next

20 years 30 50 100 years maybe things Will change Global warming is changing everything There is the talk of Introducing a premier crew it’s almost Certainly going to happen But we don’t know when five years ago They were talking about In the next five years now they’re Saying it’s going to happen but we can’t Say when so there are a lot of sites Which sit outside the grand cru which Are Very fine and they perhaps should be Grand cru But one of the rules that alsace has is That you cannot Have a single owner of a grand cru so You must have multiple owners And so that is one of the reasons why Some of the lady Or the name sites in our sites are some Of the best sites In our sas but cannot be grand crew Because they are owned by one person Or one family so that they will Certainly Be part of that premier crew designation And there are other vineyard sites which Are very very fine which Perhaps are better than some of the crew Sites Which would very definitely get the Premier crew designation so that’s

Another Thing that we are going to look out for In the next few years is the Introduction of premiere crew Like i said cremon del sus uh 25 percent Of production is a big part of Production and just general aoc A big part of production a lot of that Is on the plane And um i would very definitely say that If you can Always try to source your wines from the Foothills because It can sometimes be a very little little Bit more in money but you can get a lot More out of the bottle if you can Get the wines from these slopes rather Than on the plane of ourselves And uh you’ve got their bondage tardive And Bt as it’s often known that was actually Um Started here in alsace to describe wines Which are left on the vine To ripen on the vine rather than being Picked and then dried On racks so a lot of areas in france in Italy and spain will Pick ripe grapes but then leave them out Too dry and racks The van dash tadi wines are left on the Vine To ripen and to start to drip to shrivel Up

So they will obviously have a much Higher percentage of sugar And you will generally make a sweet wine With a vondage And selection underground noble are Wines Grapes which have been infected by noble Rock so If you have left your grapes on the vine And You’ve been lucky enough that they Haven’t been affected by bad rot If you’re lucky enough they’ll be Affected by good rot and by the Triges canaria and then you can make Your selection the granobler and they Will Be hand-picked you’ll go have people Going through the vineyard several times A few days you know between each try and Picking selected grapes which have been Affected by noble rot And some of our sassa’s finest wines are Without a doubt So the sgn wines some of the sgn wines And if you Ever get a chance if somebody ever says To you would you like a glass Never say no because it’s just you’re Going to be missing out And it would also be i would recommend If you ever want to Invest in something for your own future Enjoyment

It would be to buy every now and again a Bottle of Sgm sexy on the granola from a top Producer in our sas And open it 20 years later and just Remember i told you that So you can thank me okay um uh julia Thank you So just a note on the label So it’s relatively it’s relatively Simple In our sas the labeling one of the Things that we have here which is Something that is now Being more commonplace than the rest of France but until Relatively recently it was only in our Sash that you were allowed to put the Great variety on the label But because it’s a relatively new region They did it from the beginning So and it had it is an advantage because It does allow you to just choose the Choose the wine for the grape variety so You Can see there you’ve got some good Really lovely producers there with the Grape variety Then you may also have a grand crew on There There are some uh producers in elsa that Don’t like to use The word grand cru because of what i was Explaining before

Because they are saying that not all Grand cru Is at grand cru level so a lot of top Producer few Top producers will not use the word Grand cru on their label they’ll just Put their own name And the name of the site on the grand Cru and that’s fine And in fact they tend to be some of the Best-selling Um uh companies Families in our south so they’re doing Very well with that a 51-grand crew you Know one of them the last one Interestingly uh um and you know in your Brain just goes completely Um kefir cough uh it was the last one to Be given grand cru Status is allowed to use a blend but There are very few there are only three Grand cru Which are allowed to use a blend so Almost all of them 48 of them have to be a single variety On the label So there are just three grand cruz which Are allowed to blend their grapes Into in their wine uh which i’ve just Told you about the von dash television The selection of the granoble And the introduction of the premiere Crew Julia thank you i think we’re almost at

The end and there’s for those of you who Really want to learn about the grand cru In the village You can get this information on the uh Vandals Website in fact they’ve recently changed The vandal Website and it does have a lot of Information on there Also the visit our sas website is very Good For getting this information so if if You ever wanted to Really get to know the wines the Differences between the grand cru And the village wine and these the aoc Wines The soils then well you’ll need to know This because it kind of helps but i Wouldn’t suggest that you have to learn Them all I couldn’t no i don’t know them all but I’ll let you have a look at that in your Own time Julia i think that’s i think we’re there Actually yeah we are there So anyway um there are probably several Things that i didn’t Uh talk about so if anybody has any Questions how are we doing time oh Perfect Okay so uh julia i don’t know if you Want to if you’ve got anything Yeah hi nina um thank you so much for

That that’s been really Interesting um certainly Yeah a lot to know about this quite a Lot of information In one hour yeah and it’s a shame that You haven’t then got the wine to be Actually to be able to taste along with It It’s uh one of the things that i miss About not doing the masterclasses is Not having the wine to taste along with It And not having people being able to Actually sort of like speak at the same Time Yeah all right okay so Julia if you’ve got some questions for Me there was um A couple earlier on um one On co-ops um yeah how good quality Are the co-ops in the region they’re not Bad In general i think they’re not bad They’re not bad they’re not you know you Get some parts of france Where you the cops are superb like you Know the Ones in some in chablis some of them the Bottom end of Burgundy um they’re okay you’re not They don’t tend to own some of the Finest vineyard sites And but they’re all right if you want to Get to know wines of our sass then

They’re probably a good place to start Because Obviously because the prices are lower You will often find that um small people Who own small plots will Sell their grapes onto co-ops but it has To be said they probably Own more of the vineyards on the plane Rather than those on the slopes so They’re not bad but they’re not perhaps They’re not brilliant but they’re not Bad Sorry it was a bit ambiguous that’s all Right We know the way with wine it’s never a Hundred percent this or that is it Yeah um Another more broad question if you could Just drink one bottle from alsace which Great variety would you pick Oh gosh that’s too hard oh Can i have two i’m gonna say yes i think It would be riesling and Stromina yeah because i’ve i’ve had Um one of the finest wines i’ve ever had Was a giveaway stramina from domain Vineback um which was a slightly sweet Well no it wasn’t actually it just Tasted sweet but it was actually dry And then but also riesling i think i’ve Had my most pleasurable You know what those moments when you go Oh my god that’s amazing Have been when i’ve been drinking

Riesling with a little bit of age From ourselves so yeah i have to have Two i can’t just have one That’s fine i’ll allow that Um i think i’ll just end the recording Here as we’re chatting now