THE STAINLESS STEEL VATS
Once pressed, the grape juice is pumped into our stainless steel vats. The temperature is controlled and lowered if necessary, by the use of a system of refrigerated jackets installed on each of these vats. For two days the juice settles and clarifies slowly. The clear juice is then pumped into other stainless steel or wooden vats to undergo alcoholic fermentation (the transformation of sugar into alcohol). The deposits left at the bottom of the vats are filtered through a Must filter. The juice obtained, rich in dry extracts and matter, is reintegrated into the juice that was originally pumped in order to obtain a wine that better reflects the richness of the terroir.
These steps are essential in order to respect the terroir and to enable it to be expressed with great precision.
The stainless steel vats are in use all year long, from the harvest to bottling including; filtration, eventual blending and storing certain wines, like those that form the base for Crémant, as well as the wines that form our Tradition range.
THE HUNDRED YEAR OLD CASKS
Our oak casks have an average age of about 75 years, the oldest dates from 1901. We have around 60 with capacities that range from 10 hectolitres to 140 hectolitres.
This collection of casks, an exceptional resource, enables us to vinify all our different terroir separately, as well as maturing them for around 12 months, or more for some of our Grand Crus.
THE BARREL CELLAR
The Barrel Cellar was prepared in 2003 so we had somewhere to mature the first vintage of the Pinot Noir Les Terres Rouge for 9 months. The barrels are Burgundy barrels (basically oak) although the oak comes from the Vosges: after several years of trials with oak from various regions, we have kept those that come from the Vosges which we feel are best able to respect the finesse of our Pinot Noir Les Terres Rouge.
The Birth of Pinot Noir Les Terres Rouges.
The Pinot Noir Les Terres Rouges comes from grapes grown at the heart of Zotzenberg, in the area known as “Rotland” - which means “red land” or “terre rouge” – in the commune of Mittelbergheim. As a result of the exceptional summer heat, the 2003 vintage remains in the annals of history.
After a hard winter, exceptionally warm temperatures during May and June advanced the flowering by three weeks. The summer that followed was very hot; the month of August saw temperatures of over 40˚C for nearly two weeks. The harvest for the appellations of Alsace and Alsace Grand Cru started on the 8th September, which was two weeks earlier than normal, with the grapes being in excellent health.
The harvest of the Pinot Noir grapes situated in Rotland was vinified separately and after maturing for 18 months in barrels, gave birth to the first Pinot Noir Les Terres Rouges.