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GROSSI LAÜE, a milestone in our history


"Grossi Laüe (Grosse Lage in German) signifies the finest vineyards in Alsace dialect and represents an equivalent to the German Grosses Gewächs or the Burgundian Grand Cru." 

Stephan Reinhardt, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate #221

For 3 months, since this Robert Parker reviews came out, the pressure on our family builds up as many fans of our wines are wondering when these wines will become available. 

In just a few months more amazing press coverage has come out, James Suckling devoting an entire guide to the wines of Alsace, with 3 Famille Hugel wines featured in his top 10 (Riesling Grossi Laüe 2010 Nr 8 with 97/100) and last but not least, Bettane+Desseauve awarding Riesling Grossi Laüe 2010 the perfect 20/20 !

Another sign the family moves in the right direction is the attention recently payed to us by some wine trade figures  from respected producers to established merchants. A few weeks ago the family received together Napa Valley auction highest bidder with Opus One CEO together with prominent Bordeaux châteaux accompanied by Berry Bros. & Rudd head buyer. 
We had the good idea to immortalize this visit on a Video with Marc and Etienne commenting the evolutions with reactions and testimonies from our distinguished visitors

It shows better than we would have been able to ever express it ourselves the changes occurring at Famille Hugel. As a result, Berry Bros. & Rudd made an offer of our entire new range of wines to their UK clients with a comment which has made the entire family very proud: "despite having bought large quantities of Alsace wine for both myself and the business, I had never until a few weeks ago set foot in the Hugel winery. For me Hugel had always been a highly regarded producer but one that was more geared for high-quality commercial wines rather than the top-end elite. How wrong I was! "

We have now already received delivery of the elegant 6 bottles cartons and our Domaine Hugel brochure to be inserted in those cartons are with the printer. 

Due to the combination of a small crop in 2010 (the Grossi Laüe launch vintage) and and a more drastic selection of the vineyard plots used, the production of those wines is between half and 1/3rd of typical Jubilee production, whose last vintage will be 2009.   

The production of 2010 Pinot Gris Grossi Laüe is just 3528 bottles, of the 2010 Riesling Grossi Laüe we just made 5292 bottles, slightly larger volumes of 2010 Gewurztraminer Grossi Laüe with 7998 bottles and finally just 3133 bottles of 2010 Pinot Noir Grossi Laüe 

The family will do its best to allocate these wines in the fairest possible way. Feel free to contact our importers for more details on the availability of Grossi Laüe wines in your region


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Two articles by authorities on the Alsace Grand Cru debate


In just a week, two very nice articles came out which add their views to the current and ever lasting Alsace Grand Cru debate...

First by Tom Stevenson (picture above) that appeared in The World of Fine Wine in which Tom wrote a very moving and personnal article about dear uncle Johnny. The author of The Wines of Alsace (Faber & Faber, 1993),
did know Johnny particularly well. He was one of the first to react on our dedicated Blog page to the passing of Johnny by saying: "A small number of people have contributed so much to Alsace, but none more so than Johnny. I don't think that anyone would dispute that Johnny Hugel was the single most important person in the development of Alsace wine industry throughout the 20th century."
In his detailed article Tom expresses his views on how the Grand Cru system came into being, and much more very personnal stories about Johnny. A must read !

Second article from the November issue of Decanter, a very positive feature on Riesling Grand Cru 2007. The introduction by Sue Style takes all the inside knowledge of another reference on Alsace wines, as Sue has been living in our area for over 2 decades. Sue Style's explanations could well be an eye opener to many local growers... As our wines were not entered in this tasting, Decanter editor Guy Woodward kindly published the Hugel view on Grand Cru in his column "and another thing"...


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Interactive "Hugel Earth" vineyard map, now in 3D

Hugel Map

 Direct access to the interactive map

The fact that the names of individual vineyards or Grand Cru slopes do not appear on our labels does not signify in any way that we do not recognise the influence of our vineyard terroir on our wines, on the contrary !

Twelve consecutive generations of family experience of the terroirs of Riquewihr has given us irreplaceable knowledge and understanding of its environment. In fact, more than half of our 27 ha estate is situated on terroir that is classified Grand Cru, on a major geological fault zone. In Alsace, we tend to say that our geology is just as complex as our history.

Internet offers such widespread possibilities to share information that we were inspired to put on-line this new interactive map, enlisting the help of top cartographic specialists : IGN for aerial photography and Benoît France for his map of the Alsace vineyards (our very grateful thanks to him). 

This interactive map enables you to locate our estates in Alsace, to understand the geological complexity of the terroirs of Riquewihr, to visualise individual vineyards and grape varieties, and to measure the interface between vines and soils : Riesling in the Schoenenbourg, Gewurztraminer in the Sporen, finally Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir in the Pflostig.

As Serge Dubs explained so well in his book "Les Grands Crus d'Alsace": "The house of Hugel in Riquewihr owns a large part of the Grand Cru Schoenenbourg and Sporen slopes. Renowned for its high quality wines, the house of Hugel has always advocated the best terroir. Its skill is exemplary and its quality image is renowned worldwide. Paradoxically, the « Hugels » do not sell their Grand Cru wines with the appellation AOC Alsace Grand Cru. Yet their Rieslings are among the finest grown on the Schoenenbourg."

You will need Flash 8 player to play this animation. If this is not yet installed on your computer, please click here.

Access the interactive map 


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Les Grands Crus d'Alsace: a book by Serge Dubs

Book Serge DubsWe are pleased to announce the recent publication of a book that is particularly important for the Alsace wine region, written by our friend Serge Dubs, in association with the journalist Denis Ritzenthaler.

After almost three years of serious research, Serge has successfully achieved his goal, the first in-depth handbook of the Grand Cru wines of Alsace. Without indulgence, it displays all the characteristic rigour, integrity and passion of one of the greatest connoisseurs and… supporters of Alsace wines. This work of reference will make its mark on our region and some of its comments will undoubtedly revive the dormant debate about Grand Cru wines, for example the following paragraph :

The house of Hugel in Riquewihr is certainly one of the most representative of Alsace negociants. It owns a large part of the Grand Cru Schoenenbourg and Sporen slopes. Renowned for its high quality wines, the house of Hugel has always advocated the best terroir. Its skill is exemplary and its quality image is renowned worldwide. Paradoxically, the « Hugels » do not sell their Grand Cru wines with the appellation AOC Alsace Grand Cru. Yet their Rieslings are among the finest grown on the Schoenenbourg. The house of Hugel has chosen a policy of promoting its brand because it believes the reputation of the name « Hugel » is superior to that of Grand Cru. This is their way of controlling the quality of the wines from its Grand Cru vineyards. Thus exceptional wines can be found under the simple appellation of AOC Alsace.

To learn more on the subject, discover our interactive "Hugel Earth" vineyard map

More "Les Grands Crus d'Alsace: a book by Serge Dubs" »

Association Les Hénokiens Hugel & Fils3 rue de la première armée F 68340 Riquewihrtel +33 (0)3 89 47 92 15fax +33 (0)3 89 49 00 10email: info@hugel.com
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