The Pinot Gris grape variety appeared in Alsace at the end of the 17th century. It varies in colour from grayish blue to brownish pink and is a very close relation of the Burgundian pinot beurot variety. Less fragrant than other varieties it produces a full-bodied, heavy wine which is particularly good when made with over-ripe grapes as it’s the case for our Selection de Grains Nobles wines. Late-harvested, Selections de Grains Nobles Pinot Gris wines are sumptuous and improve by becoming finer in time. Cuvée Clarisse is a very rare wine. Before 2000 it was only produced in 1964, 1989, 1997, and 1998.
Our Pinot Gris .Cuvée Clarisse 2000 comes solely from our east facing Grand Cru Spiegel plot, which stretches out halfway up the slope with sandy-clayed soil on marl-sandstone bedrock.
Cuvée Clarisse 2000 comes from a prime choice of Sélections de Grains Nobles produced in 2000. Work was monitored right from winter pruning to harvesting which took place on November 2000. Handpicked on steep slopes, the grapes were then carried in crates (to avoid damaging the berries) to our winery and then slowly pressed. After letting the must settle statically for about 3 days, the perfectly clear juice was put in tuns (where the temperature was rigorously controlled) to ferment. Fermentation lasted between 1 and 3 months until spring. The wines were stabilized, filtered and then bottled the following spring. They were then stocked for several years before being labeled and distributed all over the world.
The robe is a deep golden yellow with brown reflections of a great intensity. The disk is bright and limpid. The wine presents a beautiful evolution. The nose is pleasant, frank and displays a dominant of candied scents. Botrytis, honey, polish, toasted, empyreumatic, candied fruits, apricot, cooked apples, caramel. Aeration enhances the whole and reveals spices. The nose is splendid and construes a definite and pure over maturity. Splendid grape sorting work.
The onset in the mouth is ample and liquorish. The alcoholic base is well balanced. One evolves on a sharp and precise medium that refreshes and refines the structure. The range of complex flavors, caramel, toast, candied fruits, apricots, honey is quite simply splendid.
The finish has a beautiful length and a frank vivacity. The mouth is suave, exhilarating but maintains freshness. With its highly precise elaboration, this wine requires 10 more years of ageing in order to open out.
Technical sheet elaborated by M. Pascal Leonetti
Best Sommelier of France 2006
Sommelier at l’Auberge de l’Ill (*** Michelin)