Located in the northeastern corner of France, Alsace’s picturesque villages and exquisite vineyards are nestled between the Vosges Mountains and the Rhine River. The region’s unique position—in which westerly rains are blocked, making it the second driest area in the country—and its vast diversity of soil types are responsible for its distinctive wines: aromatic, fresh, food-friendly and pure expressions of the terroir.
From its exceptional climate and soils, Alsace produces Crémant d’Alsace sparkling wines, as well as still wines from five key grape varieties: Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Noir. The region’s styles run the gamut, from bone dry to lusciously sweet dessert sippers; from white to red and every shade in between; and from traditional method bubblies to elegant and refined Grand Cru wines. This wide range of expressions allows all palates and personalities—not to mention dishes—to find their perfect match. Profiles include:
Alsace also sets itself apart from other French wine regions by exclusively labeling its wines by variety. Each wine must contain 100% of the grape specified—so you always know exactly what you’re buying.
In addition, Alsace is one of the frontrunners of organic and biodynamic viticulture, with 15% of the vineyards certified as such in 2015. The winemakers—many of whom run small, family operations that date back three centuries—carefully tend their vines without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides and take special care in the cellar to ensure the highest quality wines.
To try any of the region’s spectacular wines, look for “Alsace” on the label, or stop by the below retailers during June for free tastings.