Monday, December 7, 2015
Vineyard Walk and Tasting at Weingut Meyer-Näkel in Dernau, Ahr, with Dörte Näkel – Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
The Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), organized and led by Annette Schiller, took place from September 6 – 12, 2015. The group was small - there were 7 of us, including Annette and Christian Schiller.
The tour took us to the Rheingau, Mittelrhein, Ahr, Mosel and Nahe. In the Ahr, we visited 2 producers: Adeneuer and Meier Näkel.
This posting covers the visit of Weingut Meyer-Näkel. For the visit of Weingut Adeneuer see here: Wine Tasting at Weingut J.J. Adeneuer in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler, Ahr, with Marc Adeneuer - Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015) For the Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), see here: Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), Germany
Dörte Näkel was our host.
The Ahr Region
With only 558 hectares the Ahr region is one of smaller of Germany's 13 regions. Despite its northern location (it is for example situated north of Mosel region) it primarily (almost 90%) produces red wines. It is believed that vines were cultivated in the Ahr valley already in Roman times, as is the case with nearby Mosel. The narrow Ahr river valley is responsible for the region's favored mesoclimate.
Situated between 50° and 51° north, Ahr is the world's most northern region dominated by red wine grapes. So far north, very good sites with a warm microclimate are needed to properly ripen red wine grapes, and the Ahr vineyards are said to have a "Mediterranean" microclimate. Most vineyards are located on terraced slopes facing southwest to southeast along the middle and lower portions of river Ahr, over a stretch of 25 kilometers.
Spätburgunder is the dominant grape variety of the Ahr wine region.
Weingut Meyer Näkel
Weingut Meyer Näkel was established by the marriage of Paula Meyer and Willibald Näkel. They cultivated 1.5 hectares of vines.
In 1982, Werner Näkel changed his career from a school teacher of mathematics and sport to take over the family estate. With his pronounced feel for quality in viticulture, and great cellar skills, he created a new style for Pinot Noir in the Ahr. By the end of the 1980s, Werner Näkel had earned a reputation for his forward-looking wine-making and won numerous awards for his excellent red wines.
Today, Weingut Meyer-Näkel is managed by Werner Näkel, his wife Claudia and their daughters Meike and Dőrte. Meike and Dörte served apprenticeships in wine estates before studying viticulture in Geisenheim and joining the estate – Meike in 2005 and Dörte in 2008. Meike is focusing on the production side, while Dörte is focusing on the marketing side.
Vineyard size: 15 hectares. Production: 6 000 cases. Average yield: Less than 50 hl/hectare. Best vineyard sites: Walporzheimer Kräuterberg, Dernauer Pfarrwingert, Bad Neuenahrer Sonnenberg. Grape varieties: Pinot Noir (75%), Frühburgunder – an early ripening variety of Pinot Noir (12%), Pinot Blanc (5%), Riesling (5%), others (3%)
Dörte Näkel: We see our wines as regional ambassadors that embody the character of the sites and the people involved in the making. Fruity and mineralic wines with an elegant tannin structure grow along the Ahr’s steep slopes on slate soils. It has always been a Näkel philosophy to preserve and to accentuate the wines’ individual terroir. We achieve this with old vines, conscientious vineyard site management, consistent yield reduction and careful harvesting by hand. This is the basis for healthy, fully ripened grapes and wines full of character, great balance and intense aroma. The varietal character and quality, achieved in the vineyard site, is retained by gentle handling of the grapes in the cellar. Naturally, it also takes a whole team of motivated staff.
Gault Millau WeinGuide Deutschland 2004 (Werner Näkel was the Gault Millau WeinGuide Deutschland 2004 Winemaker of the Year): Hardly anyone in Germany has had a stronger effect on the production of high-quality red wines in Germany than Werner Näkel, whom we proclaim, to a certain extent, for the work of his lifetime to ‘Winegrower of the year 2004’… The authority of the German red wine miracle of the 90's made the Spätburgunder from the Ahr valley internationally respectable. Meanwhile, his wines, which this globetrotter produces in South Africa and Portugal, excite attention.
Werner Näkel also produces wine in South Africa and Portugal. In South Africa, it is a joint venture with Neill Ellis in Stellenbosch. In Portugal, he makes wine in the Douro valley. Here, Werner Näkel acquired together with his two friends Bernd Philippi (formerly wine estate Köhler Ruprecht/Palatinat) and the late Bernhard Breuer (wine estate George Breuer/Rheingau) the Quinta da Carvalhosa in the year 2000.
2014 Illusion Eins
2014 Spätburgunder Rose
2013 Spätburgunder Blauschiefer
2013 Spätburgunder “S”
2013 Neuenahrer Sonnenberg Spätburgunder GG
2013 Dernauer Pfarrwingert Spätburgunder GG
2013 Walporzheimer Kräuterberg Spätburgunder GG
Thank you ver much Dörte for a wonderul vineyard walk and an exciting tasting.
Postings on the Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015) (Posted and Forthcoming)
4 Wine Tours by ombiasy coming up in 2015: Germany-East, Germany-South. Germany-Nord and Bordeaux
Fall Tours by ombiasy WineTours 2015 - A Very Special Treat: Experience Harvest Time !
Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), Germany
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Tour and Wine Tasting with Lunch, with Mark Barth at Wein- und Sektgut Barth in Hattenheim, Rheingau – Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
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Wine Tasting at Weingut J.J. Adeneuer in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler, Ahr, with Marc Adeneuer - Germany-North Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
Vineyard Walk and Tasting at Weingut Meyer-Näkel in Dernau, Ahr
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Wine Tasting at Weingut St. Urbans-Hof in Leiwen, Mosel
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Tour, Tasting and Lunch at Domaine Schloss Johannisberg in Geisenheim, Rheingau