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Pinot Blanc d’Alsace 2010, Domaine Charles Baur (gold medal winner)

The Baur family have been in Eguisheim since the early 18th century.  Charles Baur (1920-2001) began bottling and selling the wine produced from his single hectare of vines in 1950 and gradually extended his estate acquiring individually chosen parcels of vines in and around Eguisheim. 

Charles Baur on his way back from the harvest in 1950

 Today the estate is run by Charles’ son Armand and grandson Arnaud, the latter having joined his father after completing his degree in agricultural engineering, specialising in winegrowing and oenology. 

Armand & Arnaud Baur
Today the estate cultivates 16 hectares of vineyards around Eguisheim where the soil is limestone and clay and the steep slopes, protected by the Vosges mountains, capture the ripening rays of the sun perfectly.  All their grapes are hand-picked, hand-sorted and gently pressed in a modern, pneumatic press.  Fermentation begins with natural yeasts at low temperature to ensure freshness and concentration.  The wines are then matured on their lees for several months.


Pinot Blanc is the white incarnation of Pinot Noir; both varieties are ampelographically identical.  Once thought to be Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc was agreed as a different variety in 1896.  Its leaves are full and dark green and the grapes grow in smallish bunches with the grapes themselves being quite small.  It tastes different to Chardonnay and is ideal for the conditions in Alsace.  Interestingly, there are still small parcels and individual vines here and there in Burgundy, so the confusion of yore still has ghosts down there too.
Domaine Charles Baur
In 2010 Domaine Charles Baur produced one of the best Pinot Blanc d'Alsace we have ever tasted.  We are not alone in our belief since the wine won the gold medal in the Concours des Vins d’Alsace in 2011.  Their attention to detail makes this wine a shining example of its type.  Sure, there are less expensive examples of Pinot Blanc, but rarely have we encountered one of such purity and concentration.  It is a fine example of the Wines of Interest philosophy that it is often worth paying a little more to obtain something that is significantly superior.
The wine has a rich, concentrated nose with hints of pear, apricot and blossom.  In the mouth it is lively yet concentrated with aromatic, ripe fruit and a long finish, with cleansing acidity to refresh.
This wine is perfect with posh fish dishes, seafood, cold meats and salads or could equally be enjoyed as an aperitif or on its own in the warmth of a summer evening.  Perfect!  Order 2011 Pinot Blanc from Domaine Charles Baur here where you can also view everything else we currently have from Alsace.


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