Ruhlmann is a family run estate that has been making wine in the picturesque, fortified village of Dambach-la-Ville, in central Alsace since 1688. Today, Christine and Jean-Victor Schutz and Laurence and André Ruhlmann are the current proprietors, producing an impressive variety and quantity (1.2 million bottles annually) of still and sparkling wines from Auxerrois, Chasselas, Sylvaner, Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Muscat, Gewürztraminer and Pinot Noir. The region of Dambach-la-Ville lies on a geological fault which gives rise to a complex mixture of soils derived from granite, shale, sandstone and limestone. The estate, which spans 75 acres, includes two Grand Cru sites including ‘Frankstein’ and ‘Muenchberg’ and the diverse array of mineral-rich soil types allows for the matching of grape varietals to their most well-suited terroir. The vineyards, which are planted mid-hillside at a range of 575-1,380 ft. in elevation, are shielded by the Vosges Mountain range from humid oceanic breezes; to maintain good soil structure, the land is worked alternatively so that one row is ploughed and the the next is left to produce grass. Over time, the family has incorporated more modern equipment into their cellar, yet they still utilize hundred-year-old barrels for fermenting and aging certain wines. It is quite special to recognize that three centuries of winemaking experience is showcased in this expertly crafted Crémant Rosé that we were delighted to share with the wine club!
This 100% Pinot Noir Crémant d’Alsace rosé feels very summer-appropriate considering the aromatics evoke a mixed berry patch just before the fruit turns color. Notes of green strawberry, huckleberry and raspberry dominate and are joined by subtle hints of kumquat and white pepper. The palate, which offers tiny, effervescent bubbles, mimics the nose in showcasing more young berry fruit along with a juicy and cleansing acidity. Notes of slate and limestone develop on the mid-palate, adding depth and a nice counterpoint to the bright summery fruit flavors. This is ideal brunch bubbly and would go great with a smoked trout salad or a vegetable and goat cheese frittata!