Immich-Batterieberg

From the precipitous, slate slopes of the Mosel valley comes an absolutely brilliant  A&B discovery. Immich-Batterieberg, in the village of Enkirch was for 500 years (until the 1980s) famous as the highest-taxed and highest-rated concentrations of vineyards on the river. Not only are we talking about sites of real grand cru pedigree but because the soil here is so thin (the vines toil through pure slate), Phyloxera, the scourge of European vineyards in the 19th century has never affected the vines here. To be clear (and no doubt you can feel our excitement), we’re talking about TOP CLASS vineyards, stocked with ancient, un-grafted vines. The property was bought in 2009 after a decades-long decline and is being rejuvenated by highly talented owner/oenologist Gernot Kollmann, who trained and worked at some of the most famous names in the region.

 

What is so brilliant about the ‘new’ wines coming out of the wonderful 9th century cellars Gernot is working in, is how faithful he is being to the traditions of the Batterieberg estate. Gernot is using the historic approach, known as ‘naturrein’. This ‘back-to-the-future’ winemaking involves only natural yeasts, allowing the musts to ferment to their own natural end point and a long, slow elevage in old barrels. For most of us ‘youngsters’ this seems like avant-garde winemaking, in fact, this is how wine was made at Batterieberg for at least 500 years!

 

This is a very exciting and prestigious addition to the A&B stable; the wines are beautifully crafted (deliciously dry; not steely, bone, hard-as-nails dry but all hovering around the 11-12% alcohol mark which creates a very fine, pristine style) and gorgeously packaged. Alas, as with most things, quantities are very small, especially for the Batterieberg and Zeppwingert but we hope to build our position here over the coming vintages.