Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Pfeffingen Scheurebe

Although drunk in small doses over a four-day period, the following wine grabbed my attention from the off. Weingut Pfeffingen in the Pfalz should need no introduction to Scheurebe lovers. The 2009 vintage marked the maiden bottling of a new wine from the Fuhrmann-Eymael family: Scheurebe SP (the "SP" stands for "Selektion Pfeffingen") - a dry Scheurebe inspired, according to the winery, by the best white wines of the Loire and Bordeaux. One-third of the juice was fermented in new American oak barrels, the rest in stainless steel vats.

You know, I'm becoming increasingly convinced that the dry Scheurebes that "work" are the ones where the levels of residual sweetness are pushed to the permissible legal boundaries.* This is "exhibit A", so to speak:

Weingut Pfeffingen, Scheurebe SP Spätlese trocken 2009, Pfalz
A crazy nose of lime, blackcurrant and passion fruit. The fusion of aromas almost knocked me back. There is also a slightly vegetative note, but a far cry from the weedy aromatics of certain other trockens. Elegance and poise dominate a palate of zingy lime sherbet and pinpoint-precision lemon sorbet. Barely a suggestion of wood, but enough to lend character and body. Cool, exotic, smooth and chalky, culminating in a complex, long finish. Outstanding grand cru quality for a very un-grand cru price.

This wine has a screw-top enclosure and is certainly fine for drinking now. It is still has a lot of potential though.

*On later referring to the technical sheet that was enclosed with the delivery, I saw that the amount of residual sweetness was over 7 g/l. The statutory ceiling for trockens is 9 g/l. Normally, I wouldn't quote such piffle, but I think it's of relevance here.

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