VDP: Where and how did you get the wine bug?
Heidi Iren Hansen: When I was working as an apprentice to become a chef. My head chef was also trained as a sommelier and gave me some wines to taste now and then and inspired me to learn more about wine.
VDP: Your first encounter with German wines?
Heidi Iren Hansen: My first encounter with German high-quality wine was in sommelier School. I had tasted some sweeter styles when I was just starting to drink wines, but when I started the education I saw the whole range of German wines and were very impressed.
VDP: What is your favourite story to tell about German/VDP.wine – did you have highly emotional experience with our wines / producers?
Heidi Iren Hansen: I´ve had several very fine visits and experiences with VDP wines. The VDP ambassador seminar was amazing because it gave me a chance to taste so many fine wines and learn so much together with likeminded wine “geeks”. My most emotional experience must be when I visited Johannes Leitz with my group of students a few years ago and was given an amazing experience with visits to the vineyard, lots of knowledge and also an amazing “family style” meal.
VDP: How many bottles of German wine/VDP.wines do you have in your cellar?
Heidi Iren Hansen: Its not a big cellar (unfortunately), but it holds about 15% VDP wines I recon. Most Riesling GG and Spätburgunder.
VDP: What is your favourite vineyard in Germany – and why?
Heidi Iren Hansen: I remember very well visiting the Baden region and looking out on all the different plots along the Kaisersthul, some terraced, some not. That was an impressive site because it was such a vast and diverse area. And off course, the very steep vineyards such as Berg Schlossberg is a very impressive sight.
VDP: If it comes to German grape varieties, what is your favourite? Riesling, Spätburgunder or other?
Heidi Iren Hansen: It depends on the time of year and state of mind, but both Riesling and Spätburgunder has a special place. And I must say I really love a well made Grauburgunder although they are not as easily found as very good Rieslings and Spätburgunders.