Our journey through the typicality and the products of the territory continues and today we want to present you a very interesting reality: Domaine Bott-Geyl.
This historic winery, located in France in the Alsace region, more precisely in Beblenheim, has its roots in 1795 when Jean-Martin Geyl began producing the first wines for himself and his family in the 4 hectares of land at his disposal.
In 1953 Edouard Bott, his descendant, decided to turn this passion into a real business and founded the Domaine Bott-Geyl winery, taking it within 40 years to expand to an extent of 14 hectares of vineyards.
Since 1993, the leadership of the label has passed into the hands of Jean-Christophe Bott, his son, who has continued to carry on the family’s centuries-old traditions, combining them with the most innovative techniques of cultivation and treatment of vines, up to the conversion of the vines to organic farming in 2000 and biodynamic in 2002.
Currently Domaine Bott Geyl owns 15 hectares of vineyards, which include 6 grands crus and 4 lieux-dits, treated exclusively in a natural way, through the use of organic compost, manure and herbal teas based on willow, nettle and horsetail, which are used in a differentiated way according to the season, to guarantee a constant benefit to the vines and the land that hosts them.
Even the cleaning of the vine from wild herbs is done manually, without the use of herbicides, in full respect of nature.
The grapes are harvested by hand, transported to the cellar in 40 kg “Champagne” type boxes, which guarantee the integrity of the bunches and avoid oxidation and maceration, to then be pressed gradually (from 6 to 18 hours).
At the end of this operation, the extracted juice is left to decant for 24 hours, to separate it from the solid parts and after 3 or 4 days the natural fermentation starts, thanks to the yeasts naturally present in the grape skin, which will continue for 3 to 6 months.
Once bottled, the wines are stored in the cellar at a controlled temperature where they finish their maturation.
At no stage described above are chemicals introduced and the company’s philosophy is to leave maximum freedom and naturalness to the production process, following the times and ways of nature.
We asked some question about this interesting winery to Jean-Christophe BOTT,
The Alsace region is well known all over the world for its high quality wines, what is your secret?
Alsace is a bad-known region which nevertheless has an exceptional natural geological heritage. One of the richest in the world. The Rhine valley is a large fracture field where we find all types of soil: clays, limestones, gypsum, schists. According to us, that’s the Alsacian wines secret: Know how to work with thoses soils and make the terroir shine through the glass…
Why do you choose to produce biodynamic wines? What does exactly mean, and why do you think is better?
We choose to work in biodynamic production because we believe that this is the best way to transcribe the typicity of the soils in the wine. Biodynamic culture permits to increase the quality of biodyversity in the soils and his porosity. By the way, it permits to increase the depth of the root system and draw on the typicity of the terroir.
Is there a product you love most? Which one is the most important for your history?
We are proud to cultivate vines on the grand cru Sonnenglanz “L’éclat du soleil” in French. Indeed, historically, it is one of the first terroir claimed as a place to be protected. This has been the case since about 1930. We try to be part of this historical continuity and to offer wines with a unique character and to keep on protecting this exceptional terroir…
Today, because of the pandemic and the explosion of e-commerce, winery had to change their way to sell products, using more online shops or big distribution. What do you think about this?
We are lucky for being distributed by major wine merchants all over the world.
During the crisis, it is notably thanks to them that we have been able to maintain our activity.
As far as strategic distribution is concerned, we are more and more present on social networks. This is indeed a good way for us to transmit our values and deep convictions
Do you have new projects for the future?
Today, my son is interested in my profession. He has different inspirations from mine, and it will be up to him to experiment with new things (maceration wines for example)… to be continued
Domaine Bott-Geyl’s production is varied and ranges from the inevitable Riesling, to the aromatic Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir, passing from the fragrant Gewurztraminer to the sparkling Cremant.
We had the pleasure of tasting some of their products for you, from the “Les Elements” and “Grand Cru” lines.
A range of fruity and delicate wines, which includes Pinot, Gewurztraminer, Moscato and Riesling.
– PINOT GRIS “LES ELEMENTS” 2017
This elegant Pinot is pressed for 7 hours after harvest, decanted for 24 hours, left to ferment at a controlled temperature for 6 months and raised on the lees until bottling in September.
Alcohol content 13.5 %
Ideal serving temperature 8-9 °
It has a fruity aroma on the nose, with smoky notes and an intense and very balanced taste which persists, leaving a fresh aftertaste in the mouth.
We decided to taste it in combination with a “risotto al Bra tenero” and drops of balsamic vinegar.
– GEWURZTRAMINER “LES ELEMENTS 2017”
This aromatic Gewurztraminer is pressed for 10 hours after harvest, decanted for 24 hours, left to ferment at a controlled temperature for 4 months and raised on the lees until bottling in September.
Alcohol content 14%
Ideal serving temperature 8-9 °
It presents itself on the nose with a scent of exotic fruit and an elegant and soft taste, very enveloping with spicy notes.
We decided to taste it in combination with a terrine of chicken with vegetables and soy sauce.
GRAND CRU “SONNENGLANZ”
Exposed to the south-east, this terroir is made up of conglomerates of limestone and marl pebbles.
Thanks to its dry microclimate it is particularly suitable for Gewurztraminer and Pinot Grigio, to which it gives intensity and body.
– GEWURZTRAMINER “SONNENGLANZ Grand Cru” 2011
This sensational Gewurztraminer is pressed for 14 hours after harvest, decanted for 36 hours, left to ferment at a controlled temperature for 5 months and raised on the lees until bottling in September.
Alcohol content 13.4%
Ideal serving temperature 8-9 °
It presents itself to the nose with a very complex aroma rich in hints of fruit and honey, a sweet and full-bodied taste that gives a pleasant creamy sensation.
We decided to taste it in combination with a platter of goat cheeses and sweet and sour chilli jam.
Thanks to Domaine Bott-Geyl we got to know this little corner of Alsace, where wine is produced with passion and where generations follow one another, handing down the love for nature and the deep respect for history but with an eye to the future demonstrating how tradition and innovation can coexist and give life to something exceptional.
Get to know this reality, it’s worth it! Here you have the direct links to their socials!