Jean-Luc Mader

Mader Alsace, France.

The Mader domaine is a very small quantity, high quality wine producer based in the picture postcard village of Hunawihr in the middle of vineyards on the Route des Vins.

The family own 9 hectares of vineyards, including  prized holdings of vines in the famous ‘Rosacker’ Grand Cru vineyard and also now in the Grand cru Schl0ssberg. All vineyard work is carried out by hand and since 2005 their son Jerome is now running the estate having studied and gained a Diploma in Oenology. Since returning to the family estate Jerome has also converted all their vineyards to bio-dynamic viticulture.

Rieslings here are some of the few in Alsace produced in a classic fine dry style built to age. In exceptional years a tiny volume of late harvest ‘Vendanges Tardive’ Riesling is made in a similar fine, elegant style that ages superbly. Jerome is fanatical about quality so yields are kept very low and selections for all wines are very strict ensuring the highest quality. The entire range of wines from the Mader family taste true to their grape varieties and vineyard origins and all represent fantatsic value.

Top 10 Best Value Producers in Alsace 
Wine Report 2008,
 
Tom Stevenson

‘Although Mader’s wines from Grand Cru Rosacker steal the show, his entire line-up is recommended’
Jacqueline Friedrich, The Wines of France

2016 Pinot Blanc (StelvinLux)
‘The 2016 Pinot Blanc (2/3 Auxerrois and 1/3 Pinot Blanc) opens clear, fresh and slightly mineral on the nose, with white-fruit and melon aromas. This is a delicate and well-balanced white with juicy fruit, salty minerals and a good phenolic grip. This is a dry and straight food wine with a really good finish. Drink 2017-2026.’ 88 points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2015 Riesling (StelvinLux)
This wine also contains almost 15% de-classified Grand Cru fruit from vines around 30 years old in the great Rosacker vineyard. The wine is a blend of several sites of mostly limestone based soil. 2015 has produced a fine dry Riesling with texture and depth. Intense floral and citrus aromas with mineral backing and wonderful acid backbone.

2015 Pinot Gris (StelvinLux)
‘The 2015 Pinot Gris opens clear, ripe and aromatic on the nose with smoky and tropical fruit aromas. Round and juicy on the palate this is a medium- to full-bodied and well-structured Pinot from pure clay soils. The wine was bottled with 14.5% alcohol and [just under] seven grams of residual sugar. Fine tannins here as well, and a good, slightly salty finish. Drink 2018-2023.’ 88 points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2015 Gewürztraminer (StelvinLux)
‘The 2015 Gewurztraminer is sourced in the higher altitudes of Hunawihr from clay and limestone soils. It has a clear and fresh, pretty, precise and aromatic bouquet with some smoky aromas. Bottled with 33 grams of residual sugar, this is a round and semi-sweet Gewurz with good grip and some mineral characteristics. Drink 2018-2030.’ 88 points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2015 Riesling Grand Cru Rosacker – from 60+ year old vines located at the top of the vineyard.

‘Coming from a very warm and dry vintage, the 2015 Grand Cru Rosacker Riesling offers a deep, intense and floral bouquet with blossoms and truly ripe fruit aromas. Round and mouth-filling on the palate, this is a big, wide and well-structured Riesling with high intensity and a lot of power. The finish is still somewhat tannic due to the warm vintage and thicker skins. I’d keep it for seven or eight years before consumption. Drink 2022-2035.’ 92+ points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2014 Riesling Grand Cru Rosacker magnum – from 60+ year old vines located at the top of the vineyard.

‘The 2014 Grand Cru Rosacker Riesling opens very clear, fresh and precise on the nose and displays some gooseberry aromas at the moment, but mainly offers crushed stones and fine white fruits. This is highly complex and excitingly precise! On the palate this is a perfectly balanced Riesling: full-bodied, silky and fresh, very salty, piquant and round, with a complex, very long, highly intense and tightly woven finish. An excellent Rosacker with great purity! Drink 2022-2032.’ 93 points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2015 Pinot Gris Grand Cru Schlossberg (Dry)
Schlossberg is a south-east facing slope from a steep terraced granite block. It became the first Alsace grand cru in 1975. Mader’s vineyard is east-facing and the highest on the slope from vines over 20 y.o. giving tiny yield. The wine is whole bunch pressed with indigenous fermentation. Aged on lees for 9 months, 1/3 barrel, 2/3 stainless steel.

‘From granite soils and fermented in 350-liter barrels and stainless steel (3/4 to 1/4) the 2015 Grand Cru Schlossberg Pinot Gris Sec opens with an intense and slightly oaky, but also yeasty, bouquet with fine Pinot aromas. Intense and silky, with fine tannins and a lot of salt, this is an impressive, elegant and finessed Pinot Gris with a long and pure, stimulating salty finish. Bottled with 4.7 grams of residual sugar and 14.3% alcohol. Drink 2022-2030.’ 90+ points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2015 Gewürztraminer Grand Cru Rosacker
Schlossberg is a south-east facing slope from a steep terraced granite block. It became the first Alsace grand cru in 1975. Mader’s vineyard is east-facing and the highest on the slope from vines over 20 y.o. giving tiny yield. The wine is whole bunch pressed with indigenous fermentation. Aged on lees for 9 months, 1/3 barrel, 2/3 stainless steel.

‘The 2015 Grand Cru Rosacker Gewurztraminer is clear and smoky on the nose, fresh and nicely spicy. On the palate this is a very elegant, finessed and salty Gewurz with a nice tannin grip and structure. The finish is long and complex, well structured, and, although it is quite sweet, is a persistent and expressive Gewurz that is nicely discreet. Drink 2022-2035.’ 92+ points, Stephan Reinhardt, RobertParker.com, July 2017.

2001 Riesling Vendanges Tardives – very limited
Only a tiny amount produced of this remarkably fresh and very attractive medium-sweet, late harvest wine. Lovely fine fruit intensity, round and very long on the palate. With a residual sugar level of about 60g/l it’s about half as sweet as a typical Sauternes. And with its vibrant balancing acidity it’s an ideal wine to enjoy at the beginning of the meal as an aperitif, with paté or foie gras, or with scallop, lobster or chicken dishes. It’s also a natural for the cheese platter, particularly with the local cheeses Munster and Tomme d’Alsace and with Comté from next-door in the Jura.