One of the classical Alsatian producers I checked out at the Alsace wine day a couple of weeks ago was Hugel & Fils. I posted a profile on Hugel when I wrote about last year’s tasting. Here, I just recall that Hugel is a classical wine house with a reliably dry style of almost all of those those wines that are supposed to be dry.
Below my impression of the wines available for tasting this year, taken down in a somewhat cold condition (well, the wines were for the most part supposed to be cold, but I’d have preferred if my nose wasn’t). The wines from the higher and more cellar-worthy part of the Hugel range is often released later than the entry-level wines, so there’s always a mixture of several different vintages that’s sold by Hugel at any given time.
2013 Gentil ”Hugel”
A blend of 40% Sylvaner and Pinot Blanc, 24% Pinot Gris, 19% Gewürztraminer, 15% Riesling, and 2% Muscat.
The nose is apply and slightly flowery with some mineral. Dry palate with mineral and a very faint bitterness. Foody, well balanced, 85 p.
2012 Pinot Blanc ”Hugel”
50% Pinot Blanc and 50% Auxerrois. Carries the additional designation ”Blanc de Blancs” on the label.
Nose with apple, a hint of wool, and very light flowery notes. Dry palate, rather stony impression, good acidity, as well as a fresh and firm aftertaste. 85 p
2013 Riesling ”Hugel”
The nose is slightly flowery with some peach. The palate is unquestionably dry with citrus, some green apple, and mineral. True to style and a firm wine, 87 p.
2009 Riesling Jubilée
From the grand cru vineyard Schoenenbourg.
Nose with some petroleum, peach, some citrus and mineral. Dry palate with a ripe character and lots of citrus. Young, a bit of a hot vintage character, but elegant, 90(+) p.
2012 Muscat Tradition
60% Muscat Ottonel and 40% Muscat à Petits Grains.
The nose shows typical flowery Muscat notes that reminds me of a green marmalade candy from Fazer of Finland (which is probably a reference that is fairly useless to anyone not coming from Scandinavia). The palate is dry and somewhat stony with a medium acidity. A firm style, 86 p.
2012 Pinot Gris Tradition
Nose with some wool and smoke, and some fried apples. The palate is dry (but not bone dry) withe some mint notes and spices, good acidity and a fresh aftertaste. 88 p
2012 Gewurztraminer ”Hugel”
Residual sugar 9.3 g/l, i.e., just above the limit of sec (which on the other hand is never seen on labels in Alsace).
Flowery notes of lychee, rose-scented hand lotion, and some mineral. Rather dry on the palate (perceived sweetness 2 on the scale 1-9), good concentration, tropical fruit, a low to medium acidity, and mineral. 87-88 p
2009 Gewurztraminer Jubilée
From the grand cru vineyard Sporen, residual sugar 16 g/l, i.e., somewhat off-dry.
Nose with lychee, flowers, some honey, some tropical fruits. A more nuanced nose than 2012 entry-level Gewurz above. Rather dry on the palate (2? on the scale 1-9), good concentration, medium acidity, tropical fruit, honey, and some mineral. 89-90 p
2008 Pinot Noir Jubilée
From the vineyard Pflostig.
Nose with cherries, raspberries, smoke, and hints of candy. The palate is dry, quite firm with high acidity, and some tannins. A pleasant nose but style is a bit light for a Jubilée. Young, 87+ p.
2006 Gewurztraminer Vendange Tardive
From the grand cru vineyard Sporen, 108 g/l residual sugar.
Nose with lychee, some perfume, spice notes with some dried spice character, and spicy honey. Sweet on the palate (typical VT level or VT+), good concentration, honey, spices, fried apple, some other dried fruits, and a medium acidity. 90 p
Hugel has the most ambitious website of all Alsace wine producers, with detailed information about all wines (including older vintages), as well as a Youtube channel featuring many video clips. Below a presentation prepared just ahead of the 2013 harvest, the youngest vintage that was represented in the Hugel lineup at this tasting: