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Cave de Ribeauville

text and photographs © 2007 Tom Cannavan

These notes accompany our in-depth feature on Biodynamic Alsace.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Allegro 2005
A Pinot Noir rosé. Gently herbal, softly rose hip fruit quality. Very dry palate, with a nice fruit quality and a real lemony, white wine dryness.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Noir Terroirs 2004
Unoaked. Quite a bright cherry fruit quality. A little bit of menthol and a bit of blackcurrant or cranberry fruit. Very dry, savoury, dry pithy quality. Racy and needs food, with a spicy note in the finish.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Noir Terroirs 2004
Oaked. There's an overlay of vanillin and a touch of menthol, and a redcurrant, pomegranate dry red fruit quality. On the palate very dry and redcurranty again - fruity and fresh, but perhaps lacking a bit of flesh.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Andante 2005
80% Muscat with Gewurz. Sweet, ripe, waxy pear nose with plenty of floral notes. On the palate it is fresh and racy, with a nice texture and a nice off-dry quality, with lovely freshness.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Blanc VV 2004
100% pinot Blanc. Rather subdued nose, but a spiciness and gentle nectarine and peach down quality comes through,. The palate is nicely textured and has a limpid, fresh apple and pear fruit with just a hint of riper, sweet pear quality. Very nice finish that is dry and racy, with a minerality to the acidity in the finish.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Riesling Prestige 2004
Straightforward lemony nose, with a nicely fresh and racy palate, shot through with nervous, pithy lemon acidity. Very correct and dry, needs food.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Riesling Terroirs 2004
Very fresh, crisp, dry orchard fruits on the nose with an edge of minerality. Nice richness develops on the palate, with a hint of real fruit sweetness, but again shot through with acidity. A little more complexity.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Riesling Grand cru Osterberg 2004
Much more schisty, smoky, mineral scents on the nose. The palate is beautifully poised: it is bright and citrussy, but there's a rounded, weighty character too, with a nectarine presence but superb elegance with a waxy, fresh minerality.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Gris Prestige 2005
Fine sense of richness here with an immediately attractive peach skin and sweet yellow plum fruitiness. It is just off dry, withy a rich, pure, pear fruit quality and very nice balance. Lovely commercial wine.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Gris Terroirs 2005
A certain mealiness here, with obvious richness and small honeyed notes. Very mouthfilling peachy and nectarine fruit, with a fine acidity. Extra layers of richness and sultana and juicy Muscat raisin richness.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Gris Grand Cru Gloeckelberg 2004
Very ripe and very rich and complex, with honey and a touch of pineapple. The fruit is thick and ripe, flooding the palate with succulent fruit flavours and juicy richness. But balance is fine again, with a dry acidity and touch of minerality. Long

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Clos du Zahnacker 2004
An equal blend of Riesling Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris, this is very open and appealing with a concentrated, powerful character showing a lot of spice and waxy weight. The palate is mouthfilling and rich, with the Pinot Gris character dominating, but a lovely lemony finish.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Gewürztraminer Prestige 2004
Expressive nose of lychee and Nivea cream, and a gentle rose petal background. On the palate it is quite silky and smooth textured, with a sweetness and richness, but just stopped from being blowsy by very nicely judged, fresh acidity and a spicy note on the finish.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Gewürztraminer Haguenau 2004
There's an overripe quality on the nose here, with super ripeness and a burgeoning sense of sweetness and waxy weight. On the mid palate it is soft and yielding, with a deeply layered fruit quality but nice acidity lengthens and freshens. Quite restrained for Gewurz, but lovely.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Gewürztraminer Terroirs 2005
Very smooth, elegant and delicate, with classic Gewurz aromas, but all very light and fresh. The most delicate wine of the three gewürztraminers, with a gentle mouthfilling presence, plenty of fruit, and delicate, shimmering acidity.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Pinot Gris VT 2000
There's a huge, expressive hit of honey, smoke and lush, ripe figgy fruit. It is buttery, rich and spicy. Huge mouthfilling wine, with lots of honeyed flavours, fig and a lime peel or candied lemon note. Rich and lush, it has terrific length and deceptively firm acidity. Lovely.

Cave de Ribeauville (France) Cremant Blanc de Blancs
A blend of Pinot Blancs from 2002, 203 and 2004. Very fresh and lemony in character with a touch of herbal complexity and a crisp, racy mousse. Very tangy on the palate, with orange and lemon to the fore. Very fine.

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