My Great Uncle Sol’s daughter (I think that makes her my first cousin once removed) and her husband gave me a 375 of 1999 Reverchon Wiltinger Gottesfus Beerenauslese this week to drink to assure a sweet new year. They have been amateur “wine people” for well over 50 years and have a German Riesling specialty. The introduced me to Gewurztraminer 39 years ago. I have never heard of Reverchon and their Wiltinger Gottesfus bottling is no where to be seen in Cellartracker. That doesn’t happen often. Anyone have any clues? The winery website is not a lot of help.
You got me curious.
The winery website basically says that the estate sucked for generations and went bust. Then the current owner took over in 2007 and all was made right (history is written by the new owners, I suppose). They aren’t exactly touting the older vintages:
In the year 1921 the Huguenot banking family Reverchon took over the wine estate as their summer residence and built a 600-square-meter wine cellar with a press-room and a coach house. The estate went on to become the biggest and most renowned wine estate along the Saar. Three generations later the estate was run down – investment backlog, insufficient care of the vineyards and quality problems led to insolvency.
In 2007 the entrepreneur Hans Maret took over the desolate estate. He invested massively into the listed buildings and the modernization of the cellar. He engaged a highly-motivated and skilled team, extended the expanse of the vineyards from 8 to 20 hectares and improved the quality of the vine cultivation.
The 1999 edition of Diel & Payne’s German Wine Guide is more generous. They say that quality picked up in 1993, and call the wines “consistently … reliable.” The estate, they say, “is still heading in an upward spiral.” Thirteen years earlier, Hugh Johnson’s 1986 Atlas of German wines listed the property without comment – not a good sign.
I’d never heard of the vineyard, but there are at least two good producers who have parts of Wiltinger Gottesfuss: Van Volxem and von Kesselstatt.
I noticed that on CT as well. It looks like Van Volxem has the largest part, at least by number of bottles in CT.
Your investigation made me more curious. This from an interview with Egon Muller:
It is interesting, my other vineyard, Wiltinger Braune Kupp [Le Gallais], is directly on the Saar, in a quite sheltered bend in the river, between Kanzem, Eltenberg and Wiltinger Herder and Gottesfus, probably one the best microclimates on the Saar. I’d say on average we get higher must weights from that vineyard but nevertheless the wines from Scharzhofberg, if the grapes are ripe, make superior wines, maybe not as powerful but more elegance, finesse and delicacy.
I’m not sure if his reference to one of the best microclimates is to Gottesfuss , all the vineyards he mentions, or to Braune Kupp.
Whatever the microclimate of the Braune Kupp and Gottesfuss sites, they are considered something like premier crus, while Scharzhofberg is the equivalent of a grand cru. Gottesfuss lies at a 100% angle, according to the Hugh Johnson atlas – even steeper than most of the best sites.
FYI, I missed Johnson’s (1986) comment on Reverchon: “The friendly family estate of the Reverchons, based in Konz. Light, spritzig wines with high acidity.” Sounds like damning with faint praise, but that was long before your wine.