SCHMITT

Rheinhessen, Germany

There are growers for whom Biodynamic agriculture is a sound practice with some woo woo cosmology and growers for whom it is a matter of deep faith, that wholeheartedly embrace the esoteric as inextricable components of their holistic farming practice.  Bianka and Daniel are the latter kind, cosmically oriented folk that temper the mystic with a no bullshit attitude. Their wines are about as crunchy as it gets: cloudy, zero sulfite probiotic wines that are a total break from the prim, polished wines we’ve come to expect of Germany.  A mix of innovation and retrospective minimalism have propelled this once conservative winery into the stratosphere of natty wine cult fandom!

PRODUCTS

FREI KORPER KULTUR

Liter bottlings are just the best.  Scheurebe and Huxelrebe are skin fermented and macerated for four weeks, Pinot Gris and Ortega are directly pressed and everything is aged on gross lees until the spring.  Blended shortly before bottling with 15 ppm added sulfite.

MULLER THURGAU

Half direct press to keep acidity, half skin fermented and macerated for 4 weeks for structure and umph.  Aged separately in 1200L barrels for 9 months before blending and bottling without added sulfite.

ROSÉ

A 1200L barrel of free run juice is slowly filled across the harvest starting with Portugiueser then Dornfelder, Pinot Noir and finally Merlot.  Aged in the same barrel for a year on gross lees before bottling with 15 ppm added sulfite.

ROT

So, what of the pomace and press fraction of all the grapes from the rose?  Well, that gets fermented out and macerated for 6 weeks and then pressed into a gigunda 4000L Bavarian oak barrel for 1 year aging on gross lees before bottling without sulfite addition.  Super potent. Stuff.

SPATBURGUNDER

With 2018’s pick they started playing with whole berry ferments and in this case 30% of the stems are still in the vat.  Pressed after 4 weeks macerating into 600L barrels for gross lees aging. No sulfite.

ERDREICH

Sylvaner, Gelber Muskateller and Bacchus each picked and skin fermented separately with 6 weeks maceration before pressing together into 1200L Bavarian oak barrel for a year of lees aging before bottling without sulfite.

WILD PONY

This is basically the ultimate expression of Weingut Schmitt weirdness.  Muskateller, Sylvaner and Riesling skin fermented and macerated to six weeks then pressed into a single 500L barrel that doesn’t get topped up the whole way.  This facilitates biological aging (sous voile - under a veil of flor) like what’s done for Szamorodni Tokaji in Bianka’s native Hungary. This wine is some crazy magical nonsense.