The Gresser family has been in Andlau, a village halfway between Strasbourg and Colmar in Alsace, France, since the 14th century. Their winemaking tradition dates back to 1520 when Thiébaut Gresser began farming the vines on slopes at the foot of the Mont Sainte Odile, a terroir rich in schist which is perhaps the most complex and varied geology of all 119 wine villages of Alsace. The ten-hectare estate is now run by Rémy Gresser, whose philosophy is focused on a love of the land. Using organic and biodynamic methods, Rémy creates wines whose style combines elegance and aromatic richness.
For a proud viticulturist like Rémy Gresser, the most important thing is the love of the soil. He believes this is what separates the winemaker whose prime concern is profitability and market forces, from the authentic winemaker who remains faithful to a philosophy of the terroir and the environment and who represents the historical qualities of the land.
Rémy oversees vineyards with extremely complex geology. He produces exciting wines of great purity and expression due to the soil from which they come. His three Grands Crus, for example, are very different in style. Wiebelsberg is the largest Grand Cru, and its sandstone gives very floral Rieslings. Moenchberg, on granite and fossil limestone, produces succulent wines. And Kastelberg, a unique terroir on Steige schist, produces some of Alsace’s most exciting wines, loaded with minerality. His other crus are Brandhof (limestone), Duttenberg (clay-marne) and Kritt (gravelly soil).
Rémy's traditional philosophy extends to his winemaking, where his vinification allows the wine to progress naturally through the marvellously slow alchemy of fermentation. The estate uses traditional wooden barrels for the maturation, to encourage the wines to express the whole of the organoleptic range of the grapes.
Gresser produces dry wines from all white varieties approved for Alsace, including Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Muscat and Sylvaner, as well as Pinot Noir, the only variety planted in the region for red wines. The styles range from still to Crémant and the two special late-harvest designations: Vendanges Tardives and Selection de Grains Noble.