18.05.2018 – Weingut Domaine l´Horizon, Roussillon, Frankreich
02.06.2018 – Terrassen Opening, Weingut Reichsrat von Buhl, Weingut Seckinger, Weingut Dr. Bürklin-Wolf, Weingut Scheuermann, Deutschland
Nico Espenschied is deeply rooted in Rheinhessen, where his family has been in the wine business since the 17th century.
His wines are produced honestly, with a lot of heart and hand. The wines offer the necessary respect for nature and the people behind it! His philosophy: low impact wine caretaking.
The grapes are separated from the juice at a very late stage. They are not pressed at all or only pressed gently, and enjoy a long contact with the yeast. Nico Espenschied’s self-perception, however, is not about what happened, but rather about what happens that he can pass on himself. All this makes Nico wilful and unconventional, sometimes originally full of respect for nature, sometimes loud and lively. But he is always full of creativity and self-confidence.
There are no fining or stabilizing agent used and filtration is avoided. Sulphur? Only as much as necessary! The family is proud because in the future, all of Nico Espenschied’s wines will be fermented regardless of whether it is white or red. It is a gentle method of winemaking!
While Nico Espenschied let the wind blow around his nose in Burgundy, Sonoma Valley or Burgenland, he learned that often enough things happen in the vineyard and cellar that are absolutely contrary to the textbook, and that trust in nature is the most important thing for winemaking. For this reason, the family trusts above all their gut feeling and leaves the final decision to nature. “We want our wines to be authentic and bring a little bit more home flavour into the glass with each vintage,” says Nico Espenschied.
The soils are strongly marked from yellow sand to red rock, basalt, clay marl to shell limestone. Many hours of sunshine and the most dry region of Germany offer ideal conditions for viticulture. Grown and not made is another motto of the family. In the end, these are wines with a lot of hands and even more of hearts filled with astonishing character and individuality.
6 QUESTIONS TO… NICO ESPENSCHIED
What was the craziest thing you tried about making wine?
Certainly the 16 Red Shower PETNAT. Not that I would lack experience in sparkling wine or mash fermentation, but this idea was quite crazy: Just made many white petnats and I decided from my gut feeling that I will try to make a red! What happens to it? Turned out to be a young fresh red wine with co2 and acidity without wood ripeness, blood-red with lots of mud and yeast and that is a champagne bottle with a pressure of 8 bar! That was the worst thing I’ve ever seen! It looked worse than in the butchers!
What do you do differently from everyone else?
First of all: the wheel in viticulture is not reinvented! And fortunately there are many great colleagues with the hottest stuff, who think back to the pure craft and question what the food chemistry or agriculture business has actually brought us… So you have to ask what I actually do not do: no enrichment, deacidification, no fining agents or stabilizers, no yeast addition. Only if necessary filtered (not sharp) and sulphured.
Why wine and not liquor?
After my first Rock am Ring music festival (at 16 years old), I decided relatively fast to stop with drinks with more than 15% alcohol, but so that life really does not become too boring, I also started to brew beer.
What has been your best wine experience so far?
Private party with the best woman in the world high up on the roof of Claus Preisinger with breathtaking views over the lake. I’m just saying: Love peace and happiness…
How would you describe the changes in viticulture over the past 10 years?
The whole world of wine has never grown so close together! The nice thing is that there are more positive moments, but unfortunately the negative ones have already happened.
4, 5, 6 glasses of wine and you…?
And I’m eager to get the next great bottle out of my treasure chamber!
Fortunately, there’s enough of them!