Describing Dirler-Cadé in a fair manner is a difficult task. How do you explain all the terroirs that the firm so ably expresses? How do you choose which wines are most prominent? What should I do the friendly reception and the tremendous skill justice?
The vineyards of Dirler-Cadé covers 18 hectares. The vineyards have been assembled partly from Jean Dirler, partly from his wife, Ludivine, born Cadé. The sleepy village Bergholtz in the southernmost sector of the Route du Vin borders Geubwiller, and parts of the the four Grands Crus are shared. From north to south, these are Speigel (marl), Kessler (bundsandstein), Saering (muschelkalk) and Kitterlé (complex geology). Of Dirler-Cades vineyards, a full 45% are on these Grands Crus. The firm has Gewurztraminer on all four Grands Crus, Riesling in three, Muscat on two and Pinot Gris on one. On those Grands Crus there are also other varieties. For example, Saering produces a fleshy and flavorful Pinot Noir that has the body to allow it to be vinified in new oak.
Jean Dirler shows huge skill and creativity. One example is how he handled his normal Pinot Gris 2009. The heat during harvest gave the wine a low acidity, causing malo-lactic conversion. Therefore he put the wine in oak. Result: a large and complex wine in a buttery and smoky vanilla style, hard to distinguish from a Meurault. It also makes a fine sparkling wine where he (like Barmès-Buecher in Wettolsheim) uses the indigneous grape sugar in all three stages of production.
But without doubt, it is the muscat wines that make Dirler-Cade so unique. Here are the peachy Saering and the cocky, cool Spiegel. Two radically different wines that have one thing in common - the stunningly fresh aroma and pure taste.
As for Riesling wines ranging from the vivid, classic Lieu-Dit Belzbrunnen over the mineral Spiegel, to one of Alsace finest wines - Riesling Grand Cru Kessler Heisse Wanne.
Dirler-Cadé domaine is like no other. It offers 90 wines for sale. The diversity, consistency and quality is simply unbelievable. And Dirler-Cadé masters all varieties and styles.
Last visit: 2011.