My readers know that I am a lover of gewürztraminer, especially the great producers of Alsace and New Zealand. If in doubt see the articles for Hugel, Brookfields and Coopers Creek. I haven’t indulged this passion for a while so it is time!
On my recent trip to NZ the good man Dean at Centre City wine shop in Wellington recommended the Johanneshof 2008 dry (trocken in German) gewürztraminer from Marlborough. I generally prefer the drier styles of gewürztraminer – anyone who tells you it has to be sweet is – how shall we put it – wrong! Of course a touch of sugar is left in the winemaking, as it is with the Alsatian examples like Hugel, and this helps keep the palate soft and luscious – but the palate detects very little sugar, just fruit weight and full mouthfeel.
Check out the beautiful deep sparkling golden colour on this five-year old wine. The nose just blows your mind – it is lifted and perfumed, bursting with dried stonefruit and cherry blossom, with lashings of lychee and Turkish Delight. There are sturdy secondary characters of ripe juicy fleshy peaches and herbs, with an edge of minerality and tinge of smokiness. Since it has had no oak, my guess is that the smoky touches have come from the yeast strain(s). Please correct me if I am wrong – I am an enthusiast not an expert.
On the palate it is up there with the best gewürztraminer I have ever had – and I have had more than I can remember. The stonefruit comes through with honeysuckle and dried herbs and the gentle minerality. It is luxuriously soft and long, a peaches and cream treat with complexity and class. I groaned many times drinking this wine. Mmmmmm!!!
The winemakers trained in Germany and it shows, as this is reminiscent of the Alsatian aged beauties I have tried. The fruit quality is outstanding and winemaking masterful, allowing the wine to display its amazing qualities like a strutting peacock. It can show off to me any time!
This wine was perfect with matured cheeses, nuts and dried fruits. It would also partner well with spicy food. Or just drink it on its own.
Check it out at: www.johanneshof.co.nz/wines/2008-gewurztraminer/