Thursday, 12 May 2011

Roter Gutedel

Vintners' cooperative "Haltinger Winzer" was in the local news recently after winning one of the four designated categories in the annual Gutedel Cup. Winemaker Markus Büchlin is understandably quite proud. What was unusual about this victory was that the grape varietal wasn't pure Gutedel, but a mutation called Roter Gutedel (or Chasselas Rosé). However, the wine in question was, technically speaking, still white.

Jenny and I were able to taste the wine within the cooperative's grounds during our bike ride on 1 May, and were suitably impressed. Later, on a recent supermarket visit to Germany, it was evident that the wine was selling like the proverbial hot cakes, so I quickly grabbed a couple of bottles for future consumption.

Haltinger Winzer, Roter Gutedel 2010, Baden
Straw bordering on golden, with a honeydew melon reflexes showing up the colour of the grape varietal. Not really a pale rosé, but with the same suggestive hue as, say, a blanc de noirs.
Lovely red melony notes on the nose. Expressive and inviting. Maybe even some minerally hints. The honeydew character translates onto the palate. Luscious yet sappy and light. Delicious.

It just occurs to me that Roter Gutedel might actually be blended by winemakers in Markgräflerland into regular "Gutedel" bottlings as a matter of course. I suspect this might be their secret weapon of sorts, adding extra personality to the finished wine - in much the same way Alsace's vintners add touches of Auxerrois into their Pinot Blancs. However, I stand to be corrected on this.

Pictured here is a Roter Gutedel vine; I took the picture quite randomly in early September 2007 in a parcel situated at the edge of the Haltinger Stiege vineyard (bordering Weiler Schlipf). Maybe it's the parcel used for the wine(?).

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