"Do everything in harmony with nature to bring wine to perfection". This is the philosophy guiding the fantastic German wine producers at Jean Stodden.
Stodden has been a name in fine wine in the Ahr since 1578, and is one of the region's star producers with the current heir, Alexander Stodden, at the helm since 2001. Inspired by the great wines of the Côtes de Nuits, his focus is on making structured, age-worthy Pinots.
Their traditional approach to winemaking starts in the vineyard with grapes from old vines, most famously at the Recher Herrenberg vineyard, where south-facing slate slopes are home to ungrafted Pinot, leading to exceptional, collectible reds. Favouring low, good quality yields over volume, great pride is taken over their careful tending of the vines. Strict pruning in spring and extensive green harvesting ensures that the vines produce the highest quality fruit. Hand harvesting and careful grape sorting further ensure that only the best fruit makes it way into the final wine. In line with their philosophy to work "in harmony with nature" Jean Stodden were a driving force behind the Ahr becoming Germany's first wine region to shun the use of insecticides in the vineyard.
The traditional approach continues into the winery with long macerations and prolonged skin contact, with the wines regularly spending nearly four weeks in the fermentation tanks. Oak ageing is widespread, with a variety of barrels both new and old and small and large employed to add fine tannin and ageworthiness to the wines.