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May 10, 2010



Very interesting posting! Learned so much, thank you! Alex


Great info - enjoy everything you have posted.
I read a previous post about Marcel Deiss and noticed our LCBO here in Ontario,Canada recently released one of his wines.
It was the 2004 Pinot D'Alsace. A little sweeter than what I usually drink but I did enjoy it. I found it similar to what our Niagara wineries refer to as a late harvest wine.
It's really good to see an increase in wineries going organic and biodynamic.
A few years ago I read an interesting story about the soil being "dead" in many Bordeaux vineyards due to chemical use. The article mentioned a husband and wife team working in the vineyards to bring life back to the soil.

Thank you,



Great!!! Planted a field blend (red&white) too here in Austria

Alder Yarrow

I'm super jealous, Bert, of this visit. I have wanted to visit Deiss for a long time, and I adore the wines. For some reason Gruenspiel has become very difficult to find in the U.S. and I worried that Deiss had stopped making it. I am glad to see it is still in production. I think it is one of the most unique wines in the world.


Hi Alder,
Sorry to steal you the visit, but it was not a fair game, I'm living much closer from Bergheim...
I'm looking forward to read about your own visit there someday, Jean-Michel Deiss is an opiniated man who has many intersting things to say and learnt all of them on the job, not in the school. Gruenspiel was maybe a low volume batch compared with other cuvées.

Egmont Labadie

To Howard Watson:
the couple you spoke about are Lydia and Claude Bourguignon (what a name!), they are now bringing a new vineyard to production in Cahors.
Their internet site:


Howard Watson

To Egmont Labadie:

Thank you for the info - yes they are the people I read about.
More people should be concerned about the health of our soils.
Farmers here in Ontario use a lot of Monsanto chemical sprays. Especially on soy bean and corn fields.
Unfortunately our government promotes its use.

To Bertrand :

Your blog has made me more interested in organic /biodynamic wines.
Yesterday I visited some biodynamic wineries in our Niagara region.
Much has changed since you were there last. A lot of new wineries have opened.


T om

Great post. My understanding from when I studied ancient Greek history was that the wine was dehydrated after it was produced in order to preserve it. So when they added water, they were not adding water to wine as we know it, but were actually rehydrating a jelly like substance (if what my professor said was correct; he was a classics professor, not an enologist).


Howard : Thanks for the info about wineries in Ontario. I'd understood you were refering to Claude Bourguignon, the guy is known here for doing a great job on soils and awakening growers about how their life is important to crops.

Tom : That's even more advanced as a use of dry wine-extract than what I would have supposed possible in such ancient times. Thanks for sharing this !

T om

Here's a slideshow I found on the matter. I note that all the references are from well after my tenure in college, so the knowledge of the subject may be more developed and accurate than when I was studying. http://www.slideshare.net/BAComer/wine-pre-history


As a distributor in California tasked with describing how special these wines are, I am so grateful for this post. Thank you for your work and careful description. I felt as if I had been there myself making notes!

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