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'The Mosel in Germany is on the mainstream tourist route. People who come in to taste my wines are wondering why they taste so different from my neighbor’s wines. But I tell them the story — the unbeatable story — of taking time, and they get it. Because more people are looking for natural products these days.'
The Melsheimer winery is a place full of history and tradition. Walking into the small cobbled street in the village of Reil indeed feels like a moment of the past, as if we are in the middle of the 19th century where this may well have been the Burgundy or Bordeaux of the wine world. The Melsheimers were never part of the 'top' estates or 'prime' single-vineyards, but already Thorsten Melsheimer's grand father was incredibly proud of the family's monopole vineyard - Reiler Mullay Hofberg - a few minutes away from the tiny village. Thorsten and his wife Steffi took over the 200- year-old family estate in 1994 and immediately began cultivating the vineyards to organic. Since 2009, all the vineyard work has been done according to biodynamic principles, receiving its Demeter certification in 2013. To date, 8 of the 11 hectares grow on the steep hill of the Mullay- Hofberg, which ranks among the steepest vineyards in the entire Mosel. The Mullay-Hofberg hillside has been home to vines since the 12th century. This undulating vineyard sits below a forest and plateau - helping the plants retain water and preventing excessive vine stress even in the hottest vintages.
For many years now, Thorsten has been reducing the impact of the cellar - often allowing his wines to ferment and age for more than two years! In some vintages he may release such special barrels under the 'Lentum' label - to us some of the most mineral white wines we have ever had. Despite his affection for traditional Spätlese, Beerenauslese and other 'off-dry' styles, his love for non- traditional wines hasn’t gone unnoticed in the world of wine. His ‘Vade Retro’ (a take on zero sulphur Mosel Riesling) as well as ‘Orange’, are challenging the status quo without losing a sense of place. It's a great honour to be working with these special wines from very special people.