Dornfelder is making a comeback! That's it, I said it. Time will be my judge. We have had two great pieces of evidence in our store recently (Milans Barvirka and this one).
This lovely darling of a Dornie (as this Australian has now thus Australian-ised) is uber-purple and confounding. It makes you step back and ponder. It pulls you into the mysterious purple swirl in your glass and follows with a light velvety plushness. Dark fruited, brambly and herbal - like a Cabernet Franc but German.
The site is brutal winemaking ground. Ravished by wind atop the Sonnenberg Mountain and peppered with limestone boulders. Hence very low yields and why maybe they combined two vintages? to create this beauty. Maybe it was just to provide the wonderful balance that it has? Dunno. Maybe I will ask.
The wine is named after the beautiful horse, beautifully etched on the label by Grandma. This good lady (the horse not Grandma, although maybe she too...) helped Jonas and Daniels grandfather plant and work this vineyard 50 years ago and well deserved the honour I'd say.
The Brand Bros, Daniel and Jonas, are 5th generation winemakers from the northern part of the Pfalz region in Germany. They started making natural wines in 2014 and have been a big part of defining the reputation of the region. This is a working agricultural region well away from the touristy picture postcard villages to the south. Yet the Brand Bros bring amazing personality, purity, brightness and zing to wine with their character and energy.
Their vineyards are certified organic but they also work bio-dynamically. They mingle and interlace with wild meadows of clover, wild herbs and flowers and are abuzz with bees and other useful critters.
Grapes are hand harvested. All fermentation is spontaneous with wild yeasts. They make many of their wines with no added sulphur (the pur wines). No additives, fining or filtering.
The labels are all done by their grandma who is a local artist and they tend to have personal stories of local and family traditions which just charms me to tears.
Oh! and I know I say this about a lot of our wines, but still stand by it, these are among the best value wines I've tried...