“RESPECT FOR NATURE IS A HIGH PRIORITY FOR US”
JÜRGEN DOETSCH, OWNER, AND HANS-JÖRG LÜCHAU, MANAGER & WINEMAKER, ABOUT THEIR WINES AT WEINGUT DEUTZERHOF IN MAYSCHOSS
Office HoursMontag, Dienstag, Donnerstag & Freitag: 10:00-12:00 und 13:00-17:00 Uhr Samstag: 10:00 -16:00 Uhr Sonntag und Mittwoch nur nach Vereinbarung
70 % Spätburgunder, 11% Frühburgunder, 10 % Riesling, 4% Dornfelder, Chardonnay und Portugieser
Schieferverwitterungsgestein, Grauwacke mit Lehmanteil
VDP: What is so special about your wine estate?
Jürgen Doetsch: The location of the winery on the outskirts of Mayschoss directly on the Mönchberg, which surrounds the winery like an amphitheatre, is unique. The decision to move the winery to this location in 1980 was made by the former owner of the winery Wolfgang Hehle. Even today the winery and we still benefit from this far-sighted decision.
VDP: What is your winery philosophy?
Hans-Jörg Lüchau: Respect for nature is still a high priority for us. Good wine is made in the vineyard and not in the cellar. The different locations of our vineyard and the respective microclimate allow wines with different terroirs to be created. It is the task of the winemaker to recognise the potential of the respective site and the vine and to bring this out in the glass.
“OUR GG ARE ACTUALLY SCOOPED WITH BUCKETS INTO THE FERMENTING VAT OR THE WINE PRESS.”
If the weather shows its bad side, I can react with conventional means if necessary. As much as necessary, but as little as possible. The better I tune my work in the vineyard to nature, the less I have to do in the wine cellar. To ensure that pumps in the wine cellar last for many years, we abstain from heir use as much as possible. ... Joking aside, the VDP.GROSSEN GEWÄCHSE® are indeed scooped with buckets into the fermenting vat or wine press. I believe this gentle method has a positive effect. In the cellar, the only thing left to do is to rack – here with a pump – and add the sulphur discreetly, almost according to organic specifications. The work must be done in the vineyard at precisely the right time. That is how quality is achieved!
VDP: To which wine style do you aspire?
Hans-Jörg Lüchau: I want to make fine, elegant and balanced wines. In the hot years, we harvest earlier than others. I like fruit, but as a fresh component, not cooked. The oak should never dominate the fruit, acidity and fine minerality. My wines should be capable of ageing and are therefore often not ready to drink immediately after bottling and require maturation in the bottle – even the entry level wines. My favourite grape variety is certainly Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir), otherwise I would be in the wrong place here in the Ahr!
VDP: Which of your wines would you recommend to someone who does not yet know your winery, as an introduction, so to speak?
Hans-Jörg Lüchau: My calling card is naturally the Mayschosser Spätburgunder. This wine is my personal interpretation of the modern “Ahr-Burgundy”. The Pinot Noir grapes grow on slate and the wine is not influenced by oak aromas. Balance of our wines must be right from the entry level to the top.
“I LIKE FRUIT, BUT AS A FRESH COMPONENT, NOT COOKED.”
VDP: Which wine are you particularly proud of?
Jürgen Doetsch: We are particularly proud of Caspar C., which will be offered as "Ahrweiler Caspar -Alte Reben- VDP.Ortswein" from the 2018 vintage onwards. This wine is a real flagship of the winery. The wine has a very good price-performance ratio, considering the effort required to produce a very good Pinot Noir, supported by the use of barrique.
VDP: Why did you become a winemaker?
Hans Lüchau: I got to know Wolfgang Hehle during a sommelier course in 2000. He explained his philosophy to me and inspired me to become a winemaker.
Jürgen Doetsch: I got to know Wolfgang Hehle at the beginning of the 1990s and was enthusiastic about his human and open manner as well as his consistent wine style. I wanted to take the chance to continue this winery in the sense of this style together with Hans Lüchau when Hella Hehle was looking for a successor for the winery in 2019.
“THE FACT THAT I HAVE BECOME A WINEMAKER IS SOLELY DUE TO WOLFGANG HEHLE AND THE PROFESSION ITSELF.”
Since then, I continue to learn something new every day. Wolfgang showed me everything from the ground up and entrusted me with responsibility. After only a few years I was responsible for the cellar book and the harvest book. He also explained his philosophy to me in winemaking and taught me to taste it. Before Wolfgang Hehle died in March 2013, he said that there are no coincidences. There was a reason he had taught me everything. Now I must demonstrate what I have learned and be the bridge for the coming 14th generation.
VDP: Do you have role models or mentors?
Jürgen Doetsch: One should generally have a hard time with role models, because every person is authentic and therefore needs no role models. Mentors on the other hand exist. Wolfgang Hehle, as a mentor, has shaped the style and manner of the Deutzerhof and thus also its successors. For us at the Deutzerhof, the sentence of him is definitely remembered: "The winegrower grows with the vintages! Hans Lüchau's vintages have improved continuously, especially since 2015, as the verdict of the wine critics also shows.
Hans Lüchau: Every vintage is different and with every new vintage experience the winemaker knows how to react to the whims of the vines in the vineyard or even in the cellar. This respect for each vintage has become part of the DNA of the Deutzerhof.
“I am the bridge to the coming 14th generation.”
VDP: What are your next goals?
Hans-Jörg Lüchau: Of course, my ultimate goal is to make the Deutzerhof better known. We produce about 35,000 to 37,000 bottles per year. Besides word of mouth and print media, our wines are our best ambassadors. I would also like to hone and perfect the typical Ahr wine style with my Ahr colleagues and make it better known.
VDP: How do you combine tradition and innovation?
Hans-Jörg Lüchau: I would describe the work on the steep slopes as traditional. The terraces, in which no vehicles can drive, are tended according to old customs. The selection of the grape variety, the clone and the rootstock are, of course, enormously important and we are innovative in this respect. We also attach great importance to traditional winemaking. The "natural wine idea" moves us very much. We achieve concentration of red wines solely from free run juice from the mash. Many of our wines are matured in small oak barrels. There is certainly innovation in fermentation technology or in adapting the red wine style to modern tastes.