Domaine Marcel Deiss Grasberg Cru d’Alsace
Varieties: Riesling, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer
Vine Age: Planted 1972-2002
Vine Density: 10,000 per ha
Terroir: Top of Altenberg (Grand Cru) in Bergheim, 340-meters altitude, facing northeast, with shallow, white oolitic limestone soils
Viticulture: Certified organic (Ecocert) and biodynamic
Vinification: Very slow whole-cluster pressing, up to 12-hours, natural yeast fermentations. Aged for 12 months in large, ancient foudres.
Sweetness level: Off-dry
"The hill where the grass grows"
Grasberg is located at the summit of the Grand Cru Altenberg in Bergheim, at 340m altitude and facing northeast. The soil here is very shallow, which forces the roots to dig deep into the subsoil in search of water and nourishment.
A complex wine from Jurassic limestone terroir. Very persistent, marked by its minerality. Grasberg has tension, and this initial tightness indicates the complexity that will express itself in time.
Grasberg is the most fluorescent and electrically charged of the Deiss botrytized wines. The vineyard lies almost directly on limestone bedrock; its minerality is ripped. It is perched at the top of the Altenberg hill, north-facing, exposed to winds. The coolness of the site elevates the citrus acidity of limestone to a superlative, mouth-watering tang; restrains the botrytis from sweet to savory-sweet and sour; infuses the wine with freshness; and takes the sedimentary minerality to a more crystalline place. What is even more remarkable, even magical, is that none of these elements fight to lead. The spheres and fruit are striking, but just as much are the angles and energy. Grasberg has the golden ratio.