Friday, April 11, 2008

The wine-geek blind spot

Everyone has at least a few wines like this. Wines we love to drink, talk about, and contemplate. One of those for me, maybe the head of the class, is Boxler Sommerberg. I’ve had wonderful visits to the domaine. Slyvie Boxler turned me onto the best confiture I’ve ever had in my life, the vineyard itself is magnificent. In fact, this may be the greatest wine in all of Alsace. But how many bottles do I own? I can count it on one hand. Why? I have no idea. Maybe it is like my Bordeaux thing from the early to mid-90s. It seemed like the wines would always be available and reasonable. I made the mistake of grabbing more limited, scarce, or prestigious wines. Yes, I was unable to unload many of those at a tidy profit once I realized they weren’t for me. But wouldn’t I be happier now had I stuck to buying some things I loved even if I thought I could get them later at the same price? It is sort of like taking a girlfriend for granted, which I’ve also done. You don’t appreciate it until it has already passed you by. Well, starting tomorrow, I’m not going to make that mistake again.

2001 Albert Boxler Riesling Sommerberg (L31D)

This has such a stunning mineral precision that the most appropriate word that comes to mind blinding. Razor sharp, with an focused intensity that I’ve only found at the highest levels of academia. Sure there are waxy yellow fruits in abundance, but the structure of this wine is what captures and captivates. Like a beautiful woman it can be both captivating and dangerous. Actually almost scary in its intensity, like it knows something you do not. Fierce, unrelenting, indefatigable, yet still graceful. How is this all possible? I have no idea, but I’m not sure I can identify a better white wine that I have had all year. Not cheap, but worth every bloody cent.


Cliff said...

Wow, I've got the same relationship to their Sommerberg. I think I've got four bottles. For me, it was the relative pricing compared to stuff like Huet, which doesn't make it any more sensible.

the vlm said...

You're right, it doesn't make it any more sensible.

A great wine that we should both own a lot of.

Mark Davis said...

The same day you posted this (and before I read it), I ordered the '02 L31 at a local restaurant and it was shockingly good...I don't cellar enough of this or CFE...don't know make a good point.

the vlm said...


CFE is another one, although I do own significantly more than Boxler Sommernerg. The Boxler is a superior wine, IMO. Maybe far superior.