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Rene Mure Gewurztraminer 2008 Signature

Well, this is  a bit different. Spicy white wine. Yeah, you heard me. White wine,
Posted 14th January 2011        
     

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Well, this is  a bit different.

Spicy white wine. Yeah, you heard me. White wine, with a tongue exciting, brain arousing, spiciness. Not a savoury spice, particularly. More the kind of subtle spice you might find in Eastern sweet-meats, Turkish delight – something like that.

The grape is Gewurtztraminer. Not German, as you may expect from the name, but grown widely around the world in small quantities.

It’s a difficult one to get right. A combination of high sugar levels and low acidity in the grapes can result in an overly sweet and alcoholic concoction – something that’s more likely to happen in warmer climes. It makes sense then that probably the most famous place for Gewurtztraminer is the Alsace region of France, which has a comparatively high concentration of the grape and is capable of producing it in varying styles.

It’s where this (thrillingly tall) bottle of Rene Mure Gewurtztraminer 2008 Signature originates. For my money it’s a great introduction to this highly distinctive variety.

Forget your Cab Sav citrus tang, your Chardonnay mineral refreshment. This is an indulgent, aromatic, exotic wine. Like a sprawling tropical plant blooming on a sun soaked terrace. The seductive nose has plenty of perfume, a breathy swirl of lychee and rose petal.

Then a sip of this golden nectar yields a mouthful of peaches. It’s soft, mouth-filling, with little acid tang. A real soft-edged fruitiness followed by a hint cinnamon spice, of juicy spiced raisins soaked in alcohol.

And there is plenty of alcohol here, 13% and you can taste it, but the cool Alsace climate has prevented this from turning into a liquid pudding.

That’s what’s great about it – despite all the sensuousness, it’s actually pretty dry. There are of course sweeter examples out there if you’re in the mood, but I enjoyed the unexpected flavour and spiciness without the sugar-rush and dish-limitation of a dessert wine.

It’s not one for everyday drinking, as the price may indicate, but certainly worth it if you want to spice up your evening with a touch of the exotic – especially if you have suitably some spicy food to match.

You can get it for £12.50 at Elwood Wines.

     

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Meet the Author:
Adam Bamburg
Adam spent much of his youth in Hampshire, somewhere between Winchester and Southampton. After extracting a degree involving psychology and philosophy from a Nottingham-based university, he bid the midlands farewell and ventured back south to live in Brighton. There he found his vocation in writing: first evaluating the musical performances and recorded output of assorted beat-combos, then branching out into the terrifying world of art criticism. Despite his best efforts he now works in ‘the media’ in London. As Adam grew older and wiser he realised that wine was his favourite alcoholic beverage, that some wines are better than others, and that furthering his knowledge of the grape and producer often increased his enjoyment of the drink at the same time. He hopes to share the fermented fruits of his voyage of discovery here.