Our take – Wendi and I fell in love with Marcel Deiss several years ago. While Alsace has always held a special place in our hearts for its aromatic whites, Deiss’s wines represent to us the pinnacle of a frequently overlooked appellation, producing delightful and opulent wines. Deiss’s maverick attitude – putting his pinot noir in a Burgundy bottle, his alleged theft of heirloom vine cuttings slated for oblivion by the appellation control – as well as his dedication to terroir and natural biological processes, put him at the top of our list.
We tasted the Schoenenbourg a few weeks back and this wine is absolutely in it’s prime. It is ambrosia. Corpulent, mouth filling, it lingers on the tongue but does not cleave to it instead finishing with absolute elegance. This is why we fell in love with Marcel Deiss and why you will as well!
95-98 Points – Stephen Tanzer: “Compelling aromas of dried fruits, fresh citrus scents and honeysuckle. Then supersweet and chewy, with great suavity and sappy verve. But currently locked up tight in the middle; remarkably austere today for a wine so rich. Finishes with great purity and persistence. This is a Protestant, “interior” wine, hiding its richness, says Deiss, while the Altenberg is a flamboyant, Catholic wine.” – Stephen Tanzer (July 2001)
From the producer:
Schoenenbourg, which became famous since the Middle Age, is the flagship of the vineyard at RIQUEWIHR. The greatest wines of this commune are born on this Terroir which help it to gain the universal recognition.
This Terroir is distinguished by its topography (southern exposure, at the bottom of the valley, steepness) and its special geology: iridescent marls mixed slightly with Keuper gypsum and covered by the spreading of Vosges sandstone. The combination of a light, non-sticky soil and a subsoil of clay is quite rich in fertilisers and offers a good water retention, which probably explains why the character of the special wines – Schoenenbourg is dominant by Terroir other than by cépages.
The wines from Schoenenbourg express their undeniable ability of being aged to travel through time: rich, extraordinarily corpulent, far away from its norm: a peppery even smoky nose, a vertical structure hidden in the body, the mineral expression often hidden at a young age moves toward fossil flavor over time. Wines from Schoenenbourg have a great aging potential due to the high level residual sugar given by the always presented Noble Rot.
Schoenenbourg is one most the most veritable Grand Vin from Alsace.