COLLECTIVE Z - Sylvaner Kalkoven 2018
From the importer-
Leistadt is the kind of place where the people are their own terroir. Twenty years ago, no one wanted to come here to make wine. ‘Leistadt?! You can’t get ripe there,’ people would say. So the villagers turned to making wine for their own consumption, to hell with it.
Christoph and his partner Marie moved to their house in Leistadt in 2014, along with their gaggle of kids and another on the way. At the time they only had a little garden in front with a turtle pond and some vegetables, but the vines which abutted their new home did not belong to the property. The idea for a winery was sparked by the need for a parking spot, so they bought the land from their eighty-year-old neighbor.
Now, aided by climate change (grapes can finally ripen here) and a collective all-hands-on-deck spirit, Christoph and Marie farm 1.3 hectares of vines, all in walking distance from their house. They are true vigneron(ne)s and do every single thing in the vineyard and cellar themselves, which is why they never want to grow beyond 2 hectares. In fact, they are encouraging their neighbors to realize the gems in their possession: the small postage stamp-sized plots abutting each property are pure limestone, spared Flurbereinigung in the 50s (the massive land consolidation post WWII in western Germany). "Everyone is sitting on their own little piece of terroir, and we want to show them they're holding a secret," Marie says.
We would call their wine Francophile, but really it has an identity all its own: somewhere on the border of Northern Alsace, with the landscape of the Loire, in the heart of the Pfalz. Generous and free of spirit.
Sylvaner from very old vines, which reminds us of the freshness and minerality of the Loire. The grapes are carefully hand picked, and spend a long maceration on the skins before undergoing wild yeast fermentation and extended aging on the lees. A wine with great mineral power, herbaceousness, and those bready aromas of fermentation.