Reducing to the Maximum: Less is More

Written by Franz Weninger on the 23rd of October 2016

When you work with nature and its complexity, you quickly realize that you will not explore everything in your lifetime. This is especially true for viticulture, where one only has one chance a year to learn form experiences and experiments .

To understand more about my vineyards, I began reducing my variables. We do not use yeast or additives in the cellar. We try to reduce any influence to better understand our vineyards and grapes, and we only buy barrels from two cooperages.

© Markus Oberndorfer

An example:

In recent years, I noticed that even two similar barrels developed differently in different places in the wine cellar. What could be the reason? I found out that the temperature in the cellar was identical, but the humidity and also the air movement were not. Therefore, wines ageing in the corners of the cellar develop differently than wines closer to the entrance. If I had had different types of barrels, I would not have come to this realization. I would have thought that the barrels changed the wines.

Even in life

Everyone understands and interprets it differently, but I feel that our era is forcing us to rethink our lives on a continuous basis. I find it very exciting that the young generation does not want to own anymore, and instead prefer carsharing, streaming music, renting apartments. It seems to be as if society feels that ownership is also a burden. This feels right on a planet where resources are limited. When I look at my vinyl collection, I have the feeling that I am getting old. Also with the books I cannot help myself. I want to own the printed copy and won’t read on e-Readers. Yes, and as a wine-grower, I own vineyards, therefore I have a responsibility to them. We nurture and cherish them for the next generation, creating a connection to the future.

In the winery we will continue our way of “reducing“. Reducing varieties and wines in order to learn more about our key products and vineyards . I see this as a luxury of our time that we are able to go this route. We owe this to the post-war generation, which has worked tirelessly for prosperity. I have to thank my father and mother for this.

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