2015 Biecher & Schaal Rangen de Thann Grand Cru Alsace

SKU #1332594 95 points Wine Enthusiast

 A lovely touch of flint and smoke carry a touch of residual reduction. Underneath that is lemony purity. The palate adds a touch of stone fruit, a touch of ripe mirabelle plum - its generosity only underlined by the taut lemon freshness that pervades the wine. There is something stern and stony at the core, something fundamental and profound. The body is precise, dry and powerful and incredibly moreish. This is lip smacking but has not even started to show itself properly. The finish is clean, stony and lasting. This is one to keep. Drink 2020 - 2040.

K&L Notes

Winery Notes: "The grandest of the Grands Crus and the only one on volcanic rocks. This soil, combined with a 60-degree slope, make for tiny yields of hard-won fruit....but the results are worth the struggle, the concentration and depth of this wine is extraordinary. On the nose high aromatics with earth notes dominating... minerals, rocks. Terrific palate presence, lots of minerals and white grapefruit, all of which is easy to discern on the nose as well. Dense, rich and dry. If you keep your hands off these Alsace Rieslings long enough to give them at least 5 or 6 years of bottle age. Rangen is widely considered as the "Montrachet of Alsace". Such is the regard for the wines of Rangen that they have inspired countless poets; Michel de Montaigne in the 16th century perhaps the most celebrated. The Grand Cru Rangen is the only vineyard in Alsace on volcanic rocks. Rock. The hardness of the rock makes the soil stony and its dark colour favours heat retention. The vines in this extremly steep vineyard are 35 years old, the south facing slope is the steepest in Alsace (60°). All work in the vineyard has to be done exclusively by hand and is very demanding."

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Price: $29.99
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Staff Image By: Alex Schroeder | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/4/2018 | Send Email
This is an incredible display of terroir and typicity for Alsacean Grand Cru Riesling. My first note was “minerals,” brimming out of the glass followed by a subtle and nuanced wave of pears, stone fruit, honeysuckle and white floral notes. The phenolic texture is rich and weighty while the wine itself remains quite dry, with a linear, very long, mineral-laden finish. Whether you are a long standing Alsacean Riesling fan or are perhaps looking for a wonderful new part of the wine world to discover, this is a brilliant wine at a great price point.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Riesling

- While the rest of the world has often misappropriated the name--Welchriesling, Riesling Italico, Gray Riesling and Emerald Riesling are all names applied to varieties that are NOT Riesling--this exceptional German varietal has managed to maintain its identity. Perhaps its biggest claims to fame are its intoxicating perfume, often described as having honeyed stone fruit, herb, apple and citrus notes, and its incredible longevity - the wines lasting for decades. Aged Rieslings often take on a distinctive and alluring Petrol-like aroma. Within Germany, the grape seems to do best in the warming slate soils of the Mosel-Saar-Ruwer. Other German regions that turn out great Rieslings include Pfalz, Rheingau and Nahe. German Rieslings are made in a range of ripeness levels. The top wines are assigned Prädikat levels to describe their ripeness at harvest. These are: Kabinett, Spätlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Eiswein and Trockenbeerenauslese. Riesling has also achieved acclaim in France's Alsace, the only region in that country where the grape is officially permitted. Alsatian Rieslings are typically dry and wonderfully aromatic. Austrian Riesling is also steadily gaining praise and fine Riesling is also produced in Italy's Alto-Adige and Friuli, in Slovenia and much of Central and Eastern Europe. In the New World its stronghold is Australia, where it does best in the Eden and Clare Valleys. It is also planted in smaller amounts in New Zealand. In the US, winemakers are eschewing the syrupy sweet versions of the 1970s and 1980s, instead making elegant and balanced wines in both California and Washington State.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Alsace

- A region and appellation in France that has been a part of both France and Germany throughout history. Geologically isolated from both countries, Alsace has also maintained much of its own culture and wine tradition, while also being influenced by the traditions of both countries. Alsatian wine is easily recognized by it traditional tall bottles. Alsatian wine makers produce a unique style of varietal wine, 90 percent of which is white.