While our main aim here is to promote the many virtues of Italian wine, we also want to ensure that the proper recognition is also given to the international varieties that tantalise taste buds and provide a wonderful experience for wine lovers all over the globe.
There are wines in our online store from every corner of the globe, but it is perhaps from France where we find many wines that offer a similar degree of quality and history to the many great Italian wines that we supply.
However, instead of looking at one of the more well-known French wineries, we have instead decided to place a little bit of focus on the Albert Mann winemaker. This small company has been creating excellent organic and biodynamic wines since the turn of the century, allowing them to reach the pinnacle of that field in the process. Here we take a look at their story and one of the best wines to have been developed by the company.
A Brief History of Albert Mann
Though the winemaker has since come to renewed fame since the beginning of the 21st century thanks to their renewed focus on producing organic wines, the Mann family as a whole has been involved in making wines since the middle of the 17th century.
The company really began to hit its stride when the family joined up with another prestigious winemaking family called the Barthelmé family, who had also been growing wines for about the same period.
The fruit of their efforts led to the birth of the Albert Mann winery, which is now currently run by Maurice and Jacky Barthelmé, alongside their wives Marie-Claire and Marie-Thérèse respectively. Their joint efforts have allowed the company to become one of the foremost names in organic viticulture.
The Organic Method
As has already been noted, the Albert Mann winemaker has gained much of its most recent reputation from the quality of the organic and biodynamic wines that they produce. It is this dedication to the cause, coupled with the skill that allows them to make such wonderful wines, that has allowed the company to experience an increasing level of renown amongst other winemakers and wine lovers across the globe.
The company’s goal to produce great wines that are produced in harmony with nature, rather than making use of man-made chemicals to get the best or quickest results, started in 1997 when the company began formally practicing biodynamic viticulture at all three of their Grand Crus vineyards.
It wasn’t long before they get the knack and figured out how to get their grapes up to the required standard, leading to their wines being organically certified by Ecocert, which is a French-founded organic certification company that currently operates in more than 80 countries across the globe to certify foods that are considered to be organic.
Over the years that have followed that certification the company has dedicated themselves entirely to producing organic wines and have applied the philosophies that learned by starting biodynamic viticulture at those first three vineyards across their entire estate. The company is so dedicated to the cause that they are currently aiming to achieve a biodynamic certification from Biodyvin, which is an elite collective of winemakers in France and Germany that grows entirely biodynamic crops.
While the company has been appealing for that honour since 2010, they have continued their practices when creating their more recent wines. Though they themselves recognise that growing grapes with a biodynamic philosophy is not only labour intensive but also costs more than it would if they were to grow them using man-made chemicals and fertilisers, they also believe that the wines that they have been producing are the purest reflection of what their land is capable of and makes use of the minerals and other properties in the soil to create wines that are of a supreme level of quality.
This dedication has allowed the company to spread its wings and offer its wines throughout the world, rather than simply being restricted to France and the rest of Europe.
Today it is possible to buy wines produced by Albert Mann in practically every corner of the globe and the company strives every day to make it even easier for customers to sample their product for themselves, no matter where they happen to be in the world.
Perhaps the most famous of wines produced by Albert Mann since the company dedicated itself to the biodynamic way are its “Tradition” wines, which are notable for the fact that they come with a screw cap instead of a cork.
This wonderful variety of French still white wine features a beautifully golden-yellow colouring that is at once pale and luxurious.
On the nose the taster will enjoy a refreshing and clean scent that offers citrusy aromas of lemon and other fruits, with just the occasional hint of red apples and pears to go with it.
This trend is continued on to when the wine is allowed to encounter the taste buds, with notes of lime, pear skins and grapefruit all being distinguishable without ever overpowering each other. The taster can also tell that the minerals in the land are imbued into the wine, making it even more appealing to those who harken back to the days when wine production didn’t require man-made chemicals.
The wine concludes with a beautifully taut finish that features spicy undertones to adequately offset the more fruity qualities that the taster will experience when first drinking.
The Riesling in particular is best enjoyed with a fish-based dish and goes wonderfully well with a crawfish salad and similar sorts of dishes.
It also goes surprisingly well with Sauerkraut, as the light and citrusy flavours of the wine do an excellent job of complementing the slightly sour taste offered by this variety of cabbage.
Finally, the wine can also be enjoyed with the traditional French dish of Baeckaoffa, which combines a number of red meats with potatoes and onions to create a hodgepodge of a dish that is filling and a joy to consume.