Warmer weather means more powerful, full-bodied & riper German wines
BY IRIS ELLMANN
Weingut Dr Heger is a winery based in Germany’s south-western most tip – the village of Ihringen am Kaiserstuhl. A mere speck on the map to many, the village has a magnetic appeal for wine lovers, and rightfully so, as Dr Heger are members of the VDP. The VDP is Germany’s association of elite wine producers and a guarantee of superior quality wine. Dr Heger specialise in producing exceptional Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir), Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris), Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) and Riesling wines.
The estate’s name is inextricably bound with the Ihringer Winklerberg, one of Germany’s most renowned vineyards, and the Achkarrer Schlossberg. Extremely steep, extremely warm and extremely stony, these conditions produce distinctive wines that express their unique terroir, recognisable minerality and subtle grace. A family-run estate, Dr Heger is led by Joachim Heger and his wife Silvia. Their daughter, Katarina Heger, has recently provided a vintage report.
2022 Vintage Report
The extremely hot, dry weather during this year’s growing season reduced the risk of fungal diseases, such as downy mildew, which was a huge problem in the Baden region in 2021, due to frequent rainfall.
The big challenge this year was to ensure a sufficient water supply for the vines. The Dr Heger team already started picking grapes in mid-August in order to relieve the old vines and to prevent exceeding the perfect maturity stage of the grapes.
As the outside temperatures were still quite hot, they started picking before sunrise, so that the day’s harvest could be completed before the midday heat set in. This means the grapes were not too warm for processing.
At this stage, no precise statement can be made about the characteristics or quality of the 2022 vintage, but the wines will certainly be more powerful, full-bodied and riper compared to the 2021 vintages.
2021 brought wines of a lighter style that are characterised by freshness and acidity. Despite the small quantity of that vintage, Dr Heger and The WineBarn are extremely pleased with the quality of the wines.
Before the 2022 vintage is available next year why not sample some of Dr Heger’s current vintages?
Dr Heger – 2016 Spätburgunder Sonett dry
This Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) has a fine, ripe and unobtrusive bouquet of preserved wild strawberries and red cherry compote. Lean and lively on the palate, it is full bodied and complex, yet easy to drink and with very discreet tannins. It has a slightly smoky aroma of dried berries in the finish.
Dr Heger – 2020 Ihringer Winklerberg Weissburgunder Premier Cru dry
Complex and delicate, this Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) has aromas of fresh citrus fruits and linden blossom combined with a certain spiciness. On the palate, it has day-bright aromas, hints of Granny Smith apples and pomelo. It has a dense, fruity body with a refreshing and well-balanced acidity. A long lasting and brisk finish with fine citrus notes.
Dr Heger – 2020 Grauburgunder Sonett dry
With wonderfully juicy aromas of fully ripe cantaloupe melon and yellow pears, this Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris) is round and smooth. It has a full-bodied character on the palate with perfectly integrated acidity. Exceptionally well-balanced and harmonious in aroma, with a subtle, unobtrusive spice in the finish.
Iris Ellmann presents The WineBarn’s IWC Specialist Merchant of the Year 2022 award. Photo: Iris Ellmann To find your new favourite German wine, you can contact the award-winning merchant The WineBarn now. Visit: www.thewinebarn.co.uk Call: 0044 (0)1962 761 215 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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