If you like Riesling and Pinot Gris then the Alsace wine region in France is going to be your friend. Alsace is like no other French wine region with its distinct German influence. If you are looking for somewhere different to visit then put Alsace on your travel wish list.
From grand cru vineyards, Michelin star restaurants, and legendary castles Alsace has something for everyone. Especially high quality French wine! Discover more about the Alsace wine region below and start planning your visit!
Where Is The Alsace Wine Region?
The Alsace wine region is located on the border of northeastern France, not far from the German wine region Rheinhessen. From Paris it is 280 miles due East. From Paris it will take just under 5 hours by car and 2 hours by train. There are three main towns in Alsace. They are Strasbourg in the north, Colmar in the centre and Mulhouse in the south. The Alsace wine region is famous for the Route De Vins or the ‘Wine Route which is 105 miles long. It starts just outside of Strasbourg and finishes in just outside of Mulhouse in the south.
When Is The Best Time Of Year To Visit The Alsace Wine Region?
The best time to visit Alsace is between May and August each year. Temperatures in Alsace at this time of year range from 10 degrees overnight to 26 degrees during the day. For those interested in visiting one of the many vineyards in Alsace we do not recommend visiting in winter as the vines are bare and the wineries tend to close to the public and tourists.
What Style Of Wine Is Produced In Alsace?
The Alsace wine region is known for producing high quality french Riesling, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris. For red wine drinkers they also make good value Pinot Noir. Alsace white wines are characterised by low yielding vines which produce stunning citrus and stone fruit aromas and flavours backed with good acidity and lots of minerality. Alsace Pinot Noir is a light red wine which produces cherry, raspberry and cranberry aromas and flavours. The higher quality Alsace Pinot Noir’s will be a little heavier and also have tertiary aromas which come from ageing or maturation of the Pinot Noir in French oak for over 12 months before it is sold.
Getting To The Alsace Wine Region
The main city in Alsace is Strasbourg. You can purchase a return flight to Strasbourg from most European capital cities for under €150 if you book in advance. Check Skyscanner for a list of daily flights from your closest airport here. Alternatively, if you are flying from outside of Europe you can fly to Paris and then catch the train to Strasbourg in a little under 2.5 hours. Book your ticket with SNCF who are the main train operator in France here.
Best Hotels In The Alsace Wine Region
Choosing the right place to stay is key to a good holiday. In the Alsace wine region there are three main towns you can base your self out of. These are Strasbourg in the north, Colmar in the centre and Mulhouse in the south. Colmar is a good place to base yourself out of so you can split your time between the north and the south of the wine route without having to double back to much at the end of each day.
Savage Vines regularly visits the Alsace wine region to source wine so we know the region well. Below is a list of our top 4 hotels in Alsace:
- La Cheneudiere – 3 rue du Vieux Moulin 67420 Colroy-La-Roche – From £300 a night.
- Hôtel Cour du Corbeau Strasbourg – 6-8 rue des Couples 67000 Strasbourg – From £220 a night
- Hostellerie Des Chateaux & Spa – 11 rue des Chateaux 67530 Ottrott – From £130 a night
- Hotel Du Park – 26 rue de la Sinne 68100 Mulhouse – From £85 a night
Top 5 Alsace Vineyards To Visit
Savage Vines works with five independent organic vineyards in Alsace. We highly recommend you visit them as they make excellent quality Crémant (French Sparkling Wine), white and red wines. The vineyards and their addresses should you wish to visit are listed below:
- Kuentz Bas – 14 route du Vin 68420 Husseren Les Chateaux
- Domaine Haegi – 33, rue de la Montagne F-67140 Mittelbergheim
- Aimesstentz – 37 rue Herzog 68920 Wettolsheim
- Masion Charles Frey – 1, rue du Pinot Blanc ZA du Wasen F-67650 Dambach la Ville
- Baumann Zirgel – 5 rue du vignoble 68630 Mittelwihr
Recommended Winery Tours in Alsace
When visiting Alsace you should definitely visit one of the many vineyards in region. Most of them are small, independent family run wineries where you will discover some amazing wines. You can either organise your own itinerary or join an organised winery tour. We recommend joining an organised tour as they will drive your around and be able to share some sacred local knowledge. Below are our pick of the top tour operators in the Alsace wine region:
- Jolisoleil -1 Day Walking City and Tasting Tour (Available in Strasbourg, Colmar and Gerardmer) – Good value
- Kutzig Open Shuttle Bus – Hop on hop off style bus which runs up and down the wine route – Flexible
- Discover France – Self Guided Bike Tour (7 Days / 6 nights) – A great way to explore the region
- Cellar Tours – Luxury Chauffeur Driven Tour (5 Days / 4 Nights) – Luxurious
What Type Of Food Do They Eat In Alsace?
In Alsace they are very close to the German and Swiss border. As a result you will see how the two cultures have influenced the architecture and types of food. As a result, expect a lot of pork and game meat in the dishes, along with potatoes and cheese. Mustard also tends to feature a lot in sauces along with other root vegetables in stews. In Alsace they are also partial to a pizza with their own twist. The meals are hearty and very flavoursome.
Recommended Restaurants in Alsace
Five restaurants we recommend you visit when you visit the Alsace wine region are:
- Le Cerf – 30 rue du Général de Gaulle 67520 Marlenheim | For reservations call +33 (0) 3 88 87 73 73
- Wistub Du Sommelier – 51 Grand Rue, 68750 Bergheim | For reservations call +33 (0) 3 89 73 69 99
- Luser Stub – 13 Rue de la Herse, 68000 Colmar | For reservations call +33 (0) 3 89 24 56 06
- Chez Auguste – 11 Rue Poincaré, 68100 Mulhouse | For reservations call +33 (0) 3 89 46 62 71
- Le Purgatoire – 34 Rue de Zurich 67000 Strasbourg | For reservations call +33 3 88 35 62 87
All of the above restaurants will provide you with a great experience and traditional Alsace cuisine along with a great selection of premium wines from Alsace winemakers.
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