Among French wine regions, Alsace has had a particularly turbulent history, the prolonged tug-of-war between France and Germany for control of the province generating both unrelenting upheaval and its unique cultural character. The Muré family have, remarkably, been making wine in the southerly Rouffach region since the end of the Thirty Years War in 1648; René is the eleventh generation in charge, and farms both the original holdings and the Clos St Landelin, a
13-hectare plot within the Grand Cru Vorbourg bought by his grandfather in 1935.
Rouffach benefits from a particularly warm, dry climate, thanks both to its southerly location and also the protection of the highest of the Vosges mountains to the west. This gives the wines a certain plumpness and exoticism, as well as enabling the use of organic viticulture throughout the Clos St Landelin and Vorbourg vineyards. While the appellation laws permit very high yields, the Muré vines are pruned hard to give a smaller, more concentrated crop.
There are four tiers to the range: Tradition is made from selected vineyards throughout the region, and represents clear, vibrant varietal character above all; Côte de Rouffach comes entirely from vineyards around Muré’s southern base, and offers an extra degree of depth and spice; wines from the highly regarded Grand Cru Vorbourg vineyard are known for their balance of richness and acidity, and include the Pinot Noir Cuvée V; the Clos Saint Landelin is the pinnacle of Muré’s holdings, and adds a layer of mineral finesse on top of the already imposing Vorbourg style.