Browse Tag


Bourg invasion

Blanck 2002 Altenbourg Gewurztraminer (Alsace) – Singing right now, and as this has been consistent over the last few bottles I’m thinking of drinking through mine at this stage…maybe leaving one or two orphans for latter-day experimentation. The fruit, always more peach than lychee, and with a significant contribution from cashew, has coppered in a very pretty way, and the minerality has started to reveal itself in ruddy glints and reflections. (8/12)


Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – As bronzed as bottle as I’ve yet had (I continue to work through a two-case stash purchased on deep, deep discount), even tipping a bit towards one of the forms older gewurztraminer can take in which there’s a slightly oxidative honey aroma that’s dominant. Lingering lychee has gotten equally sticky, and the finish is short. Were the other bottles not so variable, I’d be concerned at the performance of this one, but supplementary evidence suggests this is a bit of an outlier, and better-performing corks are sustaining the wine’s progression in a more predictable way. (5/12)

Alten states

Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – Best bottle in a while, fulsome and rich. Copper-jacketed spiced peach, granulated crystal, swirly without being discombobulated. Fun stuff. (6/11)

Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – A slightly shrunken cork that feeds down into the bottle in reaction to the screw, which I interpret as the potential for advanced aging. And indeed, this is more golden and advanced than other recent bottles, yet all to the better…which gives me great hope for the remaining case or so in the cellar (this was an inventory closeout at giveaway prices a few years ago). Lushly lycheed, sticky without being overbearing or overtly sweet (though it isn’t dry, mind), spicy and fulsome. Really delicious, and absolutely the best bottle yet of what was a fair quantity. I expect proper aging will yield equal pleasures with more interesting structure. (6/11)

Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – Back to the indifferent sort of “should I come out? should I keep sleeping?” sticky peach character this exhibited from about year three (from release) though last year or so, which is a retreat from the more interesting…albeit variable…dalliances with maturity and/or damage that recent bottles have provided. The presence of the wine has increased on a fairly steady incline, however, and I’m still optimistic about the prospects. Not for greatness, which this wine will never achieve (it lacks the structure), but for additive complexity. (10/11)

Alten brown

Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – Hollowing, which is worrisome as I own a fair amount of this (still). On the other hand, this has been all over the map for years, so who knows what the next bottle will bring? It’s more peach and cashew than lychee or pork, there’s a steel that’s more present than before, but the center is decidedly not what it was. (5/11)

Alten brown

Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – After a few tightly-closed explorations, my last bottle of this (I have a fair quantity) was blossoming, so hopes were high. Apparently, the debutante ball was premature, because this is a self-absorbed teenager wrapped up in a hormonal stew of semi-imaginary problems at the moment. There’s some strappy pork jerky, perhaps, and some sticky lacings of something in the tropical family of fruits that services gewurztraminer, but otherwise this is still closed for any sort of adult business. (1/10)

Altenbourged states

[village]Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – The first bottle (of a fair quantity) that has appeared to show signs of being on the other side of its closed period. Thankfully, there’s reward for the promise of youth. Strappy, smoked pork elements have just barely started to emerge, lychee has gained a jacket of iron, and the cashews and almonds have started to shed their oil and present a harder-edged aspect. There’s pretty good acidity, still, and this will carry the wine for quite some years yet. (9/09)

Altenbourg states

[vineyard]Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – After a closed period, this has re-emerged. But to what, I wonder? It’s even more forward than it was in its youth, with the complexing elements of gewürztraminer pushed towards an easier-to-understand burst of golden yellow fruit, especially sharp yellow apricots and still-yellow peaches. (Did I mention the yellow?) Residual sugar is present but not overwhelming, and the wine’s overall bearing is middle-of-the-road in terms of body and intensity. Yet, just lurking in the background, there’s some salt and a hint of bacon. Signs of things to come, or things passed? I guess we’ll see. (3/09)

Blanck slate

[label]Blanck 2002 Gewurztraminer Altenbourg (Alsace) – Beautiful peach, pear, cashew and light lychee with a strong, crystallized mineral core and fine balance. I’ve always thought this was ageable, and now that the first throes of youth have passed, I’m even more sure. But it’s in a really good place right now, as well. (7/07)