2017 Pfister Pinot Blanc Paar
Region: Bas-Rhin < Alsace < France
Grapes: Pinot Blanc 50%, Auxerrois 50%
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: certified organic farming, clay soils; extended time on the lees, aged in steel, 12.5% ABV
Winemaker: Melanie Pfister
Domaine Pfister began operations in 1780, just outside Strasbourg. What a time to start a new enterprise! France was sending soldiers to fight in the American Revolutionary War, with its own revolution just around the corner. Wine-making in the region goes back to at least the 800's, when the village of Dahlenheim was supplying wine to the local abbey. Now, 8th gen Melanie Pfister has taken over the reins of her family's certified organic estate in Alsace, a very traditional (read: stodgy) region steeped in wine history. In addition to converting their 25 acres of vines to 100% organic viticulture, Melanie recognized the unique features of their parcels, and today a given parce's makeup dictates which grasses, grains, and legumes are grown between vines, naturally replenishing the soil and ensuring the healthiest grapes.
The Domaine's wine style has always been aromatic, well-balanced, and dry. The Paar is no exception. Its two varietals — Pinot Blanc and Auxerrois — are from the same six acre, clay-soiled vineyard, where the vines were planted in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The Pinot Blanc gives the wine lovely white floral notes and stone fruit flavors, while the Auxerrios gives it bright citrus and body. Acid and minerality balance this beautifully refined wine. We are loving Paar as we move into the fall season, and are getting ready to serve it alongside baked-apples, poached pears, and, in the spirit of Alsace, tarte flambée!