I was reminded by Andrew Jefford in a recent Decanter article of this treasure of a domaine and have made a note to myself to revisit soon. Their 13ha of vineyards are dotted around the gorgeous village of Niedermorschwihr, including in Grand Cru Sommerberg (view below, taken from the top of the vineyard) and Grand Cru Brand.
The Albert Boxler of the name is long gone, and the estate nowadays is run by his grandson, Jean, who studied viticulture at Montpellier University and returned to the family fold in the mid-90s when his father fell ill. If you want to be sure that Jean will be there and available, you need to book a tasting ahead by phone (they don’t do email and have no website of their own). It’s worth spending time with this shy, gentle man, passionate about what he does and quietly (I use the word advisedly) proud of his beautifully ‘cohérent’ (his word) wines. The whole range shows great concentration and complexity, from the entry-level Pinot Blanc B (grown in the Brand vineyard, usually reserved for Grand Cru wines) to the stunningly racy Riesling Sommerberg Grand Cru, and the labels are deliciously quaint and atmospheric.
At the conclusion of a tasting, you may find it hard to lay hands on a price list and in any case, you’ll be lucky to find any for sale – without any kind of marketing (Jean looked bemused at the mere mention of the M word), the wines sell out rapidly. To be sure of getting any, put your order in promptly once they’re in bottle – generally during the summer following the previous harvest (2015s will have been bottled a couple of months ago). Kermit Lynch imports them into the US, which is an important market for Boxler.
Albert Boxler, 78 Rue des Trois-Epis, 68230 Niedermorschwihr
Tel: 03 89 27 11 32
No email and no website (though some wines are listed for sale here: http://vigneronsdexception.com/1013-domaine-albert-boxler)
PS: a tip while in Niedermorschwihr: don’t miss Christine Ferber’s pâtisserie and preserves shop on the main street – she’s something of a celebrity and her jams are world-famous.