The picturesque village of Ockfen is situated near to Saarburg in the rural Saar valley, and only a short distance from the city of Trier. Ockfen is set in scene by its famous Bockstein hillside. The "Bocksteinhof" buildings and cellars of the Dr. Fischer estate are at the foot of this vineyard. This site has complete south/south-west exposure and the soil consists of a high percentage of slate, producing racy wines with a firm fruit structure. Ancestors of Oenologist Hans-Henning Fischer, who died in 1999, have been cultivating vineyards since 1758 according to old deeds. Obliged to this tradition, his widow Karin today manages the estate, assisted by an experienced team of devoted employees. Currently 12 ha (30 acres) of vineyard are under cultivation, of which 100% are planted with Riesling.
The vineyards of the estate are located in Ockfen, Saarburg and Wawern. The "Wawerner Herrenberger" site is a monopole site to the Dr. Fischer estate. While the wines of the "Ockfener Bockstein" are characterized by racy, well structured fruit, the wines of the "Wawerner Herrenberger" present themselves more filigrane and elegant. This is due to the soil of the first being mostly slate and the soil of the later consisting of more clay. This provides our customers with a fine variety of wines.
In the cellar the wines undergo spontaneous fermentation with natural yeast. It is our goal, to display the characteristics of the single vineyard sites in the individual wine. This reductive concept is carried out in our cellar, which naturally maintains a stable cool temperature and therefore provides optimal conditions. Wines from the Saar region naturally need a little more time to mature. With bottle age they will become more elegant and expressive as well as rounder in their appearance. The wines are astonishingly low in alcohol, but high in mineral contents. The fine acidity harmonizes well with the sweetness, giving a crisp finish. The Dr. Fischer estate belongs to the elite of the best 300 estates of Germany (member of the VDP association), and most of the production is exported, mainly to the USA.
Although not certified organic, great care is taken with respect to sustainable viticulture, as well as selective handpicking and gentle processing of the grapes, followed by a cool, naturally slow fermentation in the old oak Fuder casks (1000 litres). Since the 2007 vintage, we have been bottling our wines with the new stelvin closure.
Learn More About Riesling
The Riesling grape is happiest in a cooler climate, one that fosters its slow
and steady ripening. Often assumed to be the producer of only sweet wines, Riesling
is a fascinating grape of many faces. From bone dry to lusciously sweet, this
variety is delicious at any sugar level with its intense aromas and steely acidity.
Most popular in Germany
the Riesling grape is grown on steep, sun-facing slopes of these cooler climates.
It can be made in dry or sweet styles – Germany's qualification system for Rieslings
is actually based on ripeness level and the grape is almost always bottled as
a sole varietal in the country. In Alsace, Riesling can be blended, although typically not, and is most
often made in a dry style.
Riesling has an extremely high level of acidity. That acidity is matched by
the intensity of the grape's floral and fruit aromas. A number of descriptors
are associated with Riesling due to its tendency to adopt the characteristics
of where it is grown. Rieslings of the Mosel are distinctive because its flavors
reflect the region's slate soils, while its partner in Alsace displays less
soil character and more peach and apricot nuances due to the warmer climate.
For dry styles of Riesling, look to Germany's Kabinett levels, Alsace, Washington State, Australia and
New Zealand. For a slightly sweeter style, look to Germany's wines of the Spatlese
and Auslese levels. If you can afford it, and want a true, decadent and sweet experience, look for
the Beerenauslese and Trokenbeerenauslese styles. Hedonistic.
Summing it up
Successful Sites: Germany, Alsace, Austria, Australia, New Zealand, Washington
State, California, New York State
steely, peach, mineral, floral, petrol, orange blossom, citrus
Learn More About Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany
(moe-ZELL saahr -RUE-wehr)
The Mosel river winds its way through this wine region, passing by some of the steepest, most northerly vineyards of the world. The wines from the Mosel have a most distinctive soil based on slate. The slate-rich soils covering the region are what imparts the amazing, well-loved slate-y, mineraly flavors and aromas to the delicate Mosel wines. To keep this necessary slate in tact, when the rock slide down the steep vineyard hillsides, the vineyard workers grab a bucket and carry the rocks right back up to the vines. There is a level of care taken in the vineyards of Mosel that rivals most other regions. Tasting the wines helps to understand why.
Riesling is the grape of the Mosel – the combination of this grape with the slate soils is what makes Mosel wines so breathtakingly delicate. Common descriptors of the Mosel Rieslings include steely acidity, wet stone and delicate texture. Lower in alcohol and high in acidity, the wines are still balanced with the rich flavors of Riesling and the slate-y flavors from the soil. Two districts (or Bereiche) that you find most often on Mosel labels are Bernkastel and Zell. Both are good producers of wine from this region. Many other good wines are coming from the area – just look to make sure the bottle says "Riesling" on the label – that's a sign of quality.