Never Enough of Alsace – Domaine Kreydenweiss and their Vineyard Wisdom

Kreydenweiss for Wine and Association Podcast

The Wine and Food Association is dedicating a Podcast to the Alsace Region. A beautiful and very special wine region, but sometimes a bit forgotten by wine enthusiasts. The wines have a strong, recognizable style and are extremely gastronomic. For us, Kreydenweiss has stood out for decades. In recent years their greatness has only been further confirmed. For the Wine and Food Associations Elzas line up we chose wines from the domain, which show that Alsace counts more than ever and that you never have to get tired of Alsatian wines.

Kreydenweiss X Chabrol

Rex has worked with Kreydenweiss from the start, first with father Marc and now with son Antoine, who took over the domain in 2007. Marc was already a pioneer 44 years ago. He was one of the first to work biodynamically in the vineyards and, like Marcel Deiss, regarded the influence of the terroir more important than the grape variety. Different from other producers was also the fact that his wines were dry and mineral, rather than sweet and overly mature.

Antoine continued this visionary work of his farther. Additionally he works completely biodynamically in the cellars. Maarten van Chabrol has been working for the domain for several years now, so our bond only became stronger over the years. Rex indicates that it has not always been easy to sell Kreydenweiss. Because also 30 years ago Alsace was not a crowd favorite. And on the other hand Kreydenweiss is atypical and therefore does not characterize what an average Alsatian drinker is looking for.

Pinot Boir – nice and drinkable

You can perhaps say that Kreydenweiss is just now starting to increase in popularity. The style has become more and more palatable, especially with the Pinot Boir line. A name that refers playfully to drinkability and digestibility. These wines are available in a white (Auxerrois, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Silvaner), red (100% pinot noir from the Kirchberg Barr vineyard – the Pinot Noir KB is also made from this vineyard and is listed on the list to be elevated to the first red grand cru of Alsace). Finally, also an orange Pinot Boir of 100% gewürztraminer.

The Kreydenweiss-family always had a special feeling towards this aromatic grape. They don’s enjoy the overly aromtic style, which is too direct for them. An extra long maturation time in the vineyard and a skin maceration during the fermentation process, provide  a wine that is driven by phenols and structure and not by fruit aromas and honey. Very gastronomic and also relatively affordable with its 22 euros retail price.

Compared to the other cuvées, the Orange has a high alcohol percentage of 14.5%. On average this is about 13% at Kreydenweiss. Still the wine is digestable and full of hedonistic pleasure.

First some facts.

The winery is located in Andlau, between Strasbourg and Colmar, near Piemont des Vosges. At the foot of the hills, the vineyards benefit from a continental climate. The plots form a mosaic of terroirs, ranging from pink sandstone in Wiebelsberg and black slate in Kastelberg to blue slate in Clos du Val d’Eléon and Clos. Finally, Rebberg and Moenchberg lie on marl and limestone.

With 13.5 ha, the vineyards cover three of the Grand Crus of Andlau: Wiebelsberg, Moenchberg and Kastelberg, as well as a new Grand Cru in Barr called Kirchberg.

Wines are produced using only natural yeast and are aged in “foudres” for 12 months before bottling. The Grand Crus ripen for 24 months. The “Vins de Fruit” are fresh and invigorating, while the Grand Cru wines exude more texture and minerality.

Attention is also paid to the outside of the bottle. Every year, the label changes its appearance with a new artwork from a selected artist, whose name is also featured on the label.

Pinot Blanc Kritt

As already mentioned, Kreydenweiss and Deiss are the first to oppose the common classification of grape varieties. They were for classification based on terroirs, as in Burgundy. According to the classic Alsace classification, Pinot Blanc does not qualify for the Grand Cru classification. Which is a shame, because especially in the Alsace the grape can provide very interesting, deep styles.

Furthermore, the Pinot Blanc is often described as an introvert grape, with little expressions. The Pinot Blanc Kritt of Kreydenweiss derives from ferruginous and clay-like soil. Stony and rich in quartz. It is a blend of Pinot Blanc and Pinot Auxerrois.

With almost 8 grams of Total Acids, the wine has a very intens acidity level. But it’s completely in balance with the fruit notes and some residual sugars. It is a wine that goes on forever on the palate. Freshly sour green plums, the lingering of the tannins leave an seducing mouthfeel. At € 19.03 retail price it is truly a wine to remember. Direct order? Click here for all the wines of the domain.