The balance and freshness of Cremant d’Alsace come from the subtle match of the three grape varieties: Chardonnay for its vivacity & fruit, Pinot Blanc for its refined elegance and Pinot Noir for its persistence and subtle dark fruit. Clean and zesty, there’s a lemon rind quality to the nose along with whiffs of red fruit. The palate is refreshing, balanced and has a big personality. Touches of yellow apple and sponge cake entice on the nose. The palate adds ripe, friendly and appetizing notes of yellow plum and lemon alongside creamy fizz set against a softly autolytic background. This presents a lovely union of fruit, freshness and development. Full of flavor, is has a dry, lemony finish.
The grapes are carefully selected and vinified according to the “Methode Champenoise.” After traditional fermentation “vin de base” in tanks, a second fermentation (“prise de mousse”) takes place in the cool cellars. It does not undergo malolactic fermentation. Aging is done “sur lie” over 14 to 18 months, with daily bottle rotation, going from a horizontal to vertical position, in order for the yeast deposit to accumulate in the neck of the bottle. At the time of disgorgement the neck is frozen and, enclosed in ice, the sediment is ejected by natural pressure, after which the bottle is corked and wired.
Serve chilled. This is a lovely aperitif and adds a special touch to cocktails requiring sparkling wine.
Wine Enthusiast 91 Points
About Gustave Lorentz
The Lorentz family has been making wine since 1836 in the heart of the Alsace, which lies in the northeast corner of France, along the Rhine River. Charles Lorentz Sr., grandfather of the current president of Gustave Lorentz, developed his vineyards on the hills of Altenberg de Bergheim, in the foothills of the Vosges Mountains, which has grown to 85 acres in this extraordinary terroir, with four acres planted on the hills of the Grand Cru Kanzlerberg and 30 acres in the Grand Cru Altenberg de Bergheim.
The current management, led by Georges Lorentz, is the sixth generation of the family firm, headquartered in the medieval village of Bergheim, in the Haut-Rhin. As far back as anyone can recall, the grapes harvested from this extraordinary terroir have been vinified separately. Thus, Riesling, Pinot-Gris, Gewurztraminer and other Muscat varieties from the Altenberg de Bergheim vineyards unerringly express their unique qualities in these wines year-to-year. The family is very proud that the wines are “gastronomic,” meaning fresh, clean, well-balanced and mostly dry – great matches for many of the cuisines from the more than 55 countries where the wines are sold. As they have down through the generations, the Lorentz family hues to tradition while also employing state-of-the-art vinification techniques and equipment. Gustave Lorentz was among the first producers in the Alsace to use stelvin (screw-cap) closures. In 2012 the Gustave Lorentz vineyards became certified organic by Ecocert.