Light rain was falling as we finished the picnic lunch at Clos st-Landelin and drove in to Wintzenheim. I went up to number 76 on rue Clémenceau, rang the bell and walked through the arched gateway onto the flower-decked courtyard of Josmeyer. Celine Meyer opened the window of the apartment above the winery, poked her head through and said “Hello.” I was an hour early for my afternoon appointment but Celine and Christoph Ehrhart, Josmeyer’s vineyard manager, were ready for us and were happy to start the tasting. I knew what we would taste as Celine had done the tasting list for me way back in June. She got the wines ready and Christoph led us in to the tasting room, already set up and adorned with large pictures of Josmeyer wine labels.
Josmeyer is one of our favourite producers in Alsace and whenever we are in the region, we would visit the winery to taste and buy.
It was not surprising that discussion would gyrate towards Biodynamics and Christoph gave a lengthy and erudite account of the process and its principles. Josmeyer have holdings in the two Grands Crus Hengst and Brand and the tasting focussed mainly on wines from them. We tasted the following:
- Pinot Blanc Les Lutins 2012
- Riesling Grand Cru Brand 2011
- Riesling Grand Cru Hengst Samain 2009
- Pinot Gris Grand Cru Brand 2010
- Pinot Gris Grand Cru Hengst 2007
- Gewurztraminer Les Folastries 2012
- Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Hengst 2008
- Gewurztramier Grand Cru Hengst Vendange Tardive 2001
Christoph told us about the Hengst Pinot Noir, a first for Josmeyer, that he had recently bottled and how hard he is trying to get Grand Cru status for it. We did not taste it during the visit but I bought some anyway together with Riesling Grand Cru Hengst Samain 2009, which is one of my favourite wines, rich and complex, usually harvested in my birthday month of November. (The Pinot was tasted on my return to the UK. It is structured and elegant but I am not sure the wine is of Grand Cru standard, at least at present.)
Christophe was going to be in London the following week for the tenth anniversary celebrations of Dynamic Vines owned by mutual friend Frederic Grappe. I showed Christoph the photograph I took of him at Isabel Legeron’s Raw Wine Fair in London in 2012. We talked about meeting up again in London. “I’ll see you next week at Dynamic Vines” I told him. “May be we can have dinner at Hibiscus!”
Josmeyer UK Agent