Source: 175, The Wine Advocate; Issue Date: 29th Feb 2008 (RP-95)
Picked out ultra-selectively from all of their Pinot Gris vineyards, the Trimbach 2005 Pinot Gris Selection de Grains Nobles displays high-toned, botrytis-engendered aromas of honey, brown spices, peach preserves, and white truffle. Remarkably creamy and honeyed, with spice and truffle-infused peach preserves and tangerine liqueur, yet preserving (as have all of these best 2005s) a luscious core of fresh fruit, rich and viscous, let light on its feet and crystal clear. Butterscotch and toasted hazelnut, join the richly diverse choir here for a long, serene finish. Pierre Trimbach says the quality of material and course of fermentation here were so picture-perfect that he added only a very small dosage of sulfur to finish the wine. While there would be no need to defer the pleasure of this wine’s company provided the winery agreed to release it! it will no doubt improve for at least two decades.
The Trimbach family continues to render some of the world?s finest Riesling; to uphold the principle that wine of Alsace (unless V.T.) should not taste sweet; to release wines only when they believe those wines say ?it?s time?; and to ship 40,000 cases (or 40% of their production) to the United States. Notable developments on the occasion of my recent visit were the enhanced quality of their reserve level wines as well as outstanding performances with Pinot Gris. The wines on which I report below include some of those currently in the marketplace or about to appear, but most of the 2004s and 2005s will not be released for 1-3 more years. By the time early October rains struck in 2005, the team here had harvested everything other than their top Riesling. Yet, even though some of their most striking successes were picked unusually early, the upper-tier Rieslings here seem to have suffered neither dilution nor obscurant botrytis. The Trimbachs clearly rolled with any punches nature administered in 2004 (although by the time they harvested, abundant initial bunches had morphed into low yields), delivering Riesling of startling clarity and concentration that showcases its minerality and acidity. But in view of so much negative rot, they declined to attempt any nobly sweet selections.
The even rarer Selection de Grains Nobles (selection of noble berries), results from the selective picking of each grape which has been shriveled by noble rot. This harvest is only conducted in perfect weather conditions. Thanks to botrytis these exceptionally luscious wines boast a unique aromatic complexity and offer a surprising ageing potential. The Riesling, but more often the Pinot Gris and the Gewurztraminer Selection de Grains Nobles are produced in very small quantities and only in the very best years. The Selection de Grains Nobles Gewurztraminer is without a doubt an exceptionally food-friendly wine ? it evokes the flavors of mirabelle plum tart, ripe pear and quince, honey and fig, while remaining perfectly balanced thanks to the natural acidity which is a result of noble rot. Pair with: opulent and complex dishes, foie gras, and decadent desserts.