Wine Enthusiast 90
A floral note of summer blossom accompanies fresh notes of green and yellow apple on this wine's nose. The palate adds creaminess, presenting a harmonious, fruity, elegant and light body with a dry finish. It is a lovely aperitif. Anne Krebiehl MW, November 2020
The Tasting Panel 90
Fresh, smooth, dry and juicy; clean, lush and balanced; bracing, lively and long, charming and delicious. Anthony Dias Blue, April 2020
Alsace has been celebrated for its lovely, dry white wines for centuries, but it has gained a reputation for enticing traditional method sparkling wines in recent years. In the heart of Alsaces finest district, the Haut-Rhin, Maison Pierre Sparr follows a 300-year-old tradition of winemaking that began during the reign of King Louis XIV. The devotion to the land, the attention to the smallest detail and the uncompromising quest for excellence is in every bottle bearing the Sparr family crest.
Appellation: Appellation Crmant dAlsace Controle (awarded the region in 1976)
Location: Vosges hillsides and Rhine valley, from Guebwiller to Marlenheim
Viticulture: No irrigation; trellis system; hand-harvested
Size: 27 hectares (66.7 acres)
Vine Age: 26 years
Soil: Granite, limestone, gneiss, chalky-clay
Elevation: 200-400 meters (656-1,312 feet)
Exposure: Primarily eastern and southern
Density: 4,000 vines per hectare (1,620 vines per acre)
Dates for the beginning of harvest for each AOC are set by decree, generally 100 days after the median date of flowering, at the time when the grapes display the best sugar-to-acid ratio. Intended vineyards for sparkling wine must be declared in advance of harvest and must be picked by hand. Grapes destined for Crmant are generally picked a few days before those for still wines in Alsace.
Harvest Date(s): mid-September
Yields: 80 hl/ha (5.9 tons/acre)
Whole-cluster pressing; first fermentation occurs in temperature-controlled, stainless-steel vats, transforming the must into still wine. Six months later, the wines are blended to achieve the distinctive flavor profile of the brut rserve. Blended wine is then bottled with a specific yeast added to relaunch the second fermentation in bottle. The wine rests on lees a minimum of 12 to 16 months prior to disgorgement. Finally, the dosage is added to provide the particular brut style of this sparkling wine.
Bottle Aging: 12-16 months on the lees
Varietal Composition: 80 Pinot Blanc, 20 Pinot Auxerrois
Production Case Pack: 6/750ml
TA: 6.0 g/L
RS: 11.0 g/L
Optimum Drinking: Ready upon release
Light yellow with green reflections and fine, glittering pearl beads; the nose offers aromas of galia melon, sweet woodruff and dried mango, with minerals and hints of nuts. The soft mousseux leaves a pleasant feeling on the palate, accompanied by a racy, powerful body and crisp, lemony acidity that brings freshness to this Crmant. With time in the glass, it opens further to a complex sparkling brut, finishing with a long aftertaste.
Pierre SparrView all from Pierre Sparr
The Alsace region of France is known throughout the world for its lovely, dry white wines. Vineyards were first planted in this narrow valley during the height of the Roman Empire. In the heart of Alsace's finest district, the Haut-Rhin, Maison Pierre Sparr Successeurs follows a tradition of winemaking that began during the reign of King Louis XIV. Since the winery's founding in 1680, the Sparr family has passed along its passion for Alsatian vineyards and winemaking from one generation to the next. Their drive for perfection can be seen in the family's devotion to the land, their attention to each vine-growing and winemaking detail, and their uncompromising quest for excellence in every bottle bearing the Sparr family crest.
History of the Winery: Jean Sparr, who founded the Sparr winery in 1680, was born in the Alsace village of Sigolsheim. Over the next 300 years, nine successive generations of the Sparr family have worked the land, maintaining and expanding their estate. When Pierre Sparr took over the winery in the early 1900s at the age of 20, his innate business sense made him one of the pioneers in estate bottling in Alsace. His motto was "invest, progress and maintain" -- a motto that continues to describe the domaine that is named in his honor, "Maison Pierre Sparr Successeurs."
Pierre Sparr lived through World War II in Alsace and witnessed the destruction of his village of Sigolsheim and its surrounding vineyards. With undaunted determination, he rebuilt the family's domaine, which had always been one of the region's most beautiful. His sons, René and Charles, enlarged and replanted the estate's vineyards and expanded trade with European markets and abroad. Today Maison Pierre Sparr owns 15 hectares (37 acres) of vineyards in the heart of Alsace, at Sigolsheim; and it sources fruit from another 150 hectares (370 acres) of vineyards owned by growers who share their philosophy and with whom they have long-term contracts.
There are seven major grape varieties produced in Alsace: Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc, Muscat and Sylvaner. Maison Pierre Sparr has planted vineyards with each of the major varieties, plus Pinot Auxerrois, which is blended with Pinot Blanc in their Crémant d'Alsace Brut Réserve.
Excellence without Compromise: For the Sparr winery, meticulous care of the vineyards is of paramount importance. Their philosophy is that "the quality of a fine wine already exists in the grape." In other words, the quality of a wine is determined in the vineyard -- by viticulture and especially by the soil. For many years Maison Pierre Sparr has researched the different factors that contribute to the personality and originality of each parcel of its land. In 1996 a procedure was put in place that assures the precise choice of grapes to produce the finest cuvées. Further steps in the vineyards -- avoiding chemical fertilizers and pesticides, limiting yields, harvesting by hand – give full expression to the individual terroir found in each of its wines. "Excellence without compromise" is the winery's motto, and the Sparr quest for excellence is never-ending.