deVine Thoughts

May 31, 2022

The Dry Rieslings of Trimbach

Filed under: deVine's Daily Blog Article — Dirk @ 8:51 pm

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Author: Dirk Chan

The Maison Trimbach of Alsace fame is one of the great wine estate in the world. The family can date their winegrowing back as far as 1626, and through 12 generations. They’re based in Ribeauvillé (they moved here after the First World War), roughly in the middle of the Alsace wine region in North eastern France near the German border, consisting of a narrow strip of vineyards running in the direction of north to south.

Trimbach makes a broad range of wines from their own vineyard holdings and also bought-in grapes. The house style is quite a dry one, and they avoid using the Alsace Grand Cru vineyard names which were introduced in the 1970s. The only vineyard designation seen on their wines is with famous Clos St Hune Riesling, which comes from a 1.3 hectare plot near Hunawihr (part of the Rosacker Grand Cru vineyard). First produced in 1919 with a small production averaging 8k bottles annually, this is a dry Riesling that is one of Alsace’s (and for that matter the world’s) most famous wines, that requires patience but ages forever and beautifully as well.

The firm in its current form was developed by Frédéric Emile Trimbach in the latter part of the 19th century. His initials are still used in the official name of the company, and one of Trimbach’s top Riesling cuvées bears his name. Parcels of the Geisberg and Osterberg vineyards located on the hill rising up behind the ‘new’ family winery on the edge of Ribeauvillé are blended together to make the equally renowned Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile – the tends to drinking sooner than St. Hune.

According to Jean Trimbach, the house style is aiming for ‘harmonious wines that are concentrated, not heavy; fruity, not sweet; bracing rather than fat; polite rather than voluptuous.’ To that end, fermentations are cool and slow, maloloactic fermentation is not carried out and the wines are bottled early to retain freshness. If Rieslings have historically given you that sweet impression, and you want to try a ‘dry’ version, no place better than to start with Trimbach, try one this summer with food, you’ll be amazed.

Pictured in photo:

2017 Trimbach Riesling Clos Ste. Hune (Alsace, France) – $414.99

Other available Trimbach’s:

2019 Trimbach Riesling (Alsace, France) – $33.99

2016 Trimbach Riesling Mandelberg Grand Cru (Alsace, France) – $82.99

2011 Trimbach Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile (Alsace, France) – $94.99

2012 Trimbach Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile (Alsace, France) – $99.99

2013 Trimbach Riesling Cuvée Frédéric Emile (Alsace, France) – $104.99

2017 Trimbach Riesling Schlossberg Grand Cru (Alsace, France) – $129.99

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