COLOGNE-WINE-BLog

Organic Manifesto

In the dictionary Organic is defined as, “of, relating to, or derived from living matter”. This definition is too succinct to give clarity to one pondering what it means to be Organic, however it is telling. To me the key word in this definition is “Living” and that is wherein the essence of being Organic exists.

 

Our foods, wines, other produce, and, in some way, all products are beholden to a living ecosystem and if our respect for life within the ecosystem become brash or ignorant it will suffer, and in the long run we too will suffer. I think we tend to forget that all life is interconnected, and sadly the ripples of this forgetfulness can be seen in the negative state much of our livestock, plants, lands, and waters are currently in. Our goal is to rekindle your awareness of human connection to living matter, as well as to show you that being “Organic” is not just a label, but also a living, pun intended.

 

So when I say that my vineyards and wines are Organic, what I am really saying is that I practice my profession with a philosophy centered on a respect to “living matter” and the ecosystem it is contained in. This philosophy is applied to all aspects of the viticultural and winemaking process, such as soil management, soil to grapevine relationship, grapevine physiology, disease and pest management, harvest strategies, grape processing, fermentation, wine finishing, and more. My goal is to guide the entire process in a low impact manner so that it benefits the overall balance and complexity of the living ecology while at the same time benefiting the overall health and quality of vine, fruit, and the wine.

 

A winemaker must work very hard to become invisible in order to make wines of place, and it is through these organic approaches that we are truly able to awaken a site and give it the ability to show place. This approach involves being a steward of nature rather than her master, seeking to foster a balanced ecology of unfathomable complexity rather than a simple monoculture that may be easy to manage but is vulnerable to opportunistic pathology and disappointing in terroir expression. Conventional viticulture and winemaking, though useful in eliminating gross defects, has done little to promote excellence. Its central tenet is that clean wine will show varietal character.

 

It is our mission to awaken our vineyard sites with Organic and Biodynamic approaches, and to follow through with the same philosophy in the cellar to bring you wines of character and place. We believe that the only way to convince any skeptic of a philosophy is to allow for them to take part in it. We would be thrilled if you choose to try our wines and would love nothing more than the chance to show you the value of what we do. Perhaps you too will take part in the Organic movement once you experience the difference.

Cheers!

 


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What is Terroir?

Let’s take a scenario where identical male twins are born and separated at birth through adoption. Boy 1 came out first and was named Robert Pritchett. Boy 2 arrived 6 minutes later and was named Ernest Martin. Both spent 2 days in the hospital before going home with their respective families. The Pritchett Family was from Darien, Connecticut and lived in a spacious neighborhood owning one of the larger houses on the street. Darien is a coastal city to the Long Island Sound as well as a wealthy one, with most of its residents commuting into Manhattan, many of whom work as lawyers, bankers, and or financial advisors. The Martin Family was from Taos, New Mexico and lived in a cabin home on the outskirts of town. Taos is nestled in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in north-central NM where there is a historic pueblo village, skiing, and beautiful scenery. The town is also very well known for its many residential artists. In this scenario we have 2 people that are very similar genetically, almost perfectly identical, but living in two vastly different locations. Perhaps if they grew up in the same area we would find two individuals with very similar characteristics, passions, and qualities, but I think most would agree that this scenario would give us a much more pronounced difference in their individuality. This scenario is a window into understanding Terroir.

The reason why it is only a window is that it does not take into account what type of homes each grew up in. Was the parent situation traditional, divorced, or same-sex? Was it an only child situation or a large family scenario?  Were the families religious, and if so what religion?

What type of schools did the boys attend? Obviously I could go into even more detail, but exactly in these details is where we get to the nitty-gritty that is Terroir.   

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