I fell in love with the wines, the people that make them, and the cuisine of Alsace during a stint working the harvest there in 1984 during one of the worst vintages on record. Cold, windy, and rainy, I found out what it takes to make wine in absolutely dreadful conditions. In 2020 the wine Gods smiled down on the region with a picture perfect vintage producing dreamlike conditions for the growers. The 2020 Boxler Pinot Blanc Reserve is a great example of this great season, and one that you need to try!
If you have never had the wines from this pristine estate nestled in the foothills of the Vosges mountain in northeastern France, you owe it to yourself to give them a try. If you are a foodie, all the more reason! The food pairing possibilities not only with the Pinot Blanc Reserve on offer today, but all of the crystalline, precise Rieslings we have in stock, are nothing short of amazing. Focused and fresh on the nose and palate, lovely hints of quince, citrus and pear, clean, great minerality and acidity, but also a core of solid fruit in the middle. Simply beautiful, pure and delicious!
About the Domaine: "The small family domaine in France that works traditionally using techniques and savoir faire passed down across multiple generations is under serious threat today. Consolidation, technology, regulation, foreign investment, globalization, and many other factors (all in the name of progress), threaten the great agricultural tradition of winegrowing in France, arguably the world’s greatest winegrowing culture. Few domaines in France embody this way of life more ably and proudly than Domaine Albert Boxler in Niedermorschwihr. Jean Boxler, many generations removed from his ancestor of the same name that moved here from Switzerland in 1673, currently rules the roost at this humble yet incredibly exciting domaine. Intense and serious about his land, his craft, and his wine, Jean is the genius behind what are certainly some of the finest white wines in Alsace (and the world).
World War II brought Jean’s grandfather Albert back to Niedermorschwihr from Montana, where he was busy enjoying the natural gifts of big sky country. After the war Albert returned to the family domaine in time to harvest the 1946 crop. He became the first generation to bottle the family’s production himself and commercialize it under a family label. The wine still wears a label drawn by his cousin in 1946. Albert’s son Jean-Marc continued the tradition for several decades until passing the baton to his son Jean in 1996.
The family’s holdings are centered around the ancient village of Niedermorschwihr in the Haut-Rhin, dominated by the imposing granite hillside grand cru, Sommerberg. Jean vinifies micro-parcels within this cru separately, de-classifying some into his Réserve wines and producing multiple bottlings of Sommerberg from the different lieux-dits depending on the vintage. Sommerberg gives racy, intensely structured, very long-lived wines. Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Blanc are the specialties of the domaine, while Boxler also produces one of Alsace’s best Crémants (and Edelzwickers), an incredible Gewurztraminer grown in limestone, and some of the most hauntingly pure Vendanges Tardives and SGNs in all of Alsace. If that weren’t enough, the Boxlers also own land in the powerful grand cru Brand, the ultimate counterpart to their holdings in Sommerberg.
The Sommerberg hillside terminates in Jean’s driveway, making it easy to basically live in the vineyards, ensuring exceptionally healthy fruit year after year. After harvest, the wines are vinified and aged in old foudres in a small cellar underneath the family home until bottling. Not much has changed over the centuries; not much has needed to. Tasting through the entire range of Boxler’s wines is ample proof of the fact that Alsace, along with Burgundy, is the source of the world’s most complex, exciting white wines, and will probably always be." Kermit Lynch Website
93 points, Wine Advocate - "Blending very poor plots of the Grand Cru Brand with a parcel next to the domaine containing 50+-year-old vines, the 2020 Pinot Blanc Réserve offers a clear, intense and very elegant nose with lime notes and apple aromas on the pure and fresh, really stony bouquet. Round and very elegant on the palate, this is a dense, lush and salty Pinot Blanc that is much more dominated by the terroir than the grape variety. The wine has a purity and tension paired with finesse and perfectly ripe fruit and finishes with refreshing bright fruit aromas and this crystalline and salty minerality that lends it great aging potential, although this is already an impressive wine today. Gorgeous, especially given that warm vintage. 13.5% stated alcohol. Natural cork. Tasted at the domaine in April 2022."