Wines we don't make in Australia Hugel Gentil revue
Hugel ‘Gentil’ 2010, Alsace, FR
Prove me wrong if you can, but I think this is a wine we don’t make in Australia. It is full fruited, aromatic and nearly waxy or oily in texture but dry.
This is the cheaper white in the Hugel range: a blend based around Riesling, Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer, and it is very consistent over the years. It has a big perfume: the floral spiciness of Alsace Gewürztraminer and Pinot Gris would be the main source of that, as well as a rich fruitiness. Ten years ago, Alsace pinot gris was often so aromatic and floral you could easily confuse it with Gewurztraminer, but with the recent run of warmer years, it seems that sugar-ripeness-addiction has led to many of those wines now being powerful and almost heavy, and certainly not aromatic or delicate. This wine is a full, round, ripe mouthful: peachy ripeness, very forward and giving, and any complexity is due to the multiple varieties expressing their primary, overlapping characteristics. The palate is not lightweight nor delicate nor oaky but it is very textured.
Why do I say we don’t make this wine style in Australia? We rarely make such powerful whites which aren’t wooded for a start, and certainly we avoid the oily textures in favour of crispness. Also, there are few wines with such a bouquet of spice and flowers in this country, and if we do have something with such a load of primary fruit qualities, we normally make them with a fair dose of sugar left in them. Lastly, we don’t make many whites of this quality at a price of less than $25 a bottle.