April is the time of the year where flowers bloom and birds begin to sing. What better wine to commemorate this season of new beginnings than Gewurztraminer, a floral and easy drinking wine!
Gewurztraminer is an interesting grape for a lot of reasons. It is one of the most fragrant wines you can experience, meaning you can smell its aroma from far away and boy, does it pack a punch! Purple and white flowers will spring to mind when smelling and drinking this type of wine. It also has a spicy kick to it, with black pepper on the nose and palate. This wine is great for spring because of how easy it is to drink and it’s a perfect aperitif for a picnic or other outdoor events. It doesn’t tend to be very acidic either making it the exact opposite of many of the other wines grown in similar regions such as Riesling and Pinot Gris.
The Gewurztraminer grape is grown all over the world but does best in Alsace, which is located in France. Alsace makes very floral and powerful examples of this grape. Gewurztraminer here can be made anywhere from bone dry to dessert style and an easy way to tell which is which is the price. The dryer versions of the grape will be anywhere from $12 to $30 depending on producer and quality. Because of the location of Alsace, it really isn’t easy to get super ripe grapes with a lot of sugar to make sweet wines. Also, adding the complexity of making the sweeter wines is the need for Botrytis, a bacteria to take hold and help dry out the grape. Overall, these sweeter wines will cost around $60 and can go up to $120 depending on the producers and quality level of the wine. If you see a bottle of the sweeter styles of Gewurztraminer definitely give it a try as they are rare bottlings and difficult to find in most markets. Top producers from Alsace include Trimbach and Zind Humbrecht. Another brand to look for is a California wine producer, Fetzer, who makes a good analog to the Alsace dry style.
Whatever you do to avoid April showers, do it with Gewurztraminer and you’ll be ready to enjoy all the flowers of May!