Germany / Austria (click on each name for more information)
Jochen Clemens (Region: Mosel): My nickname for Jochen Clemens is "the Alchemist" from the magic he creates out of his small batch fermenters that produce some of the most fully flavored Mosel wines that I have ever tasted. With vineyards in the prime central Mosel area between Bernkastel and Piesport, Jochen's vineyards also have their own very attractive characteristics as well.
Corvers Kauter (Region: Rheingau): Corvers Kauter produces possibly the most "precise" wines that I have ever tasted. Dr. Corvers apparently understands the complete potential of every parcel and then creates amazing expressiveness in all of his wines. This is also quite a find as Dr. Corvers was originally was very polite in letting me know that "he has no wine" as each year's production is largely allocated to private clients. We then started talking about wine, however, and he decided to open some bottles. What I tasted was so impressive that I am now importing 12 of his wines, including multiple Pinot Noirs that are the equivalent of the most prestigious Grand Cru sites in Burgundy.
Ernst Bretz (Region: Rheinhessen): In each country from where I import wines I try to find a "local winery" that the local population looks to as their ongoing source of high quality every day drinking wines. In Germany I found a great local winery in the middle of the Rheinhessen that has been in the village of Bechtolsheim for over 300 years. That is Weingut Ernst Bretz from where I have selected six fun and refreshing wines - including two sparkling wines.
Georg Mosbacher (Region: Pfalz): The Mosbacher estate in Forst producers deeply flavored and precisely made Rieslings, Weissburgunders, and Pinot Noirs that fully express the powerful wines that can be made in the Pfalz wine region. My initial selection from this producer is of three Rieslings, a Weissburgunder, and a "Special Cuvee" Pinot Noir that show the very talented wine making skills of the husband and wife winemaking team.
Philipp Kuhn (Region: Pfalz): I normally only select one producer from each region as I prefer to not have "competition" in my portfolio but I also selected Philipp Kuhn in Pfalz due to the quality of the wines and to show how expressive Riesling can be in different terroirs. Although only 20 miles from my other Pfalz producer the wines have completely different flavor profiles but are still also very food friendly.
St. Antony (Region: Rheinhessen): The St. Antony vineyards are in the prestigious "Roter Hang" section of the Rheinhessen that is know for the deeply flavored and mineral rich wines from the iron enriched (the Roter, or Red part of the name) clay soils. Our initial selection is of three of their wines and I will look to add more once I've created more awareness about their wonderful wines.
Weingut Ziereisen (Region: Baden): The Ziereisen family winery is a prime example of many things that I look for at all of my suppliers. First of all, they are farmers first...which was immediately seen in their "wine shop" where far more space was allocated to displaying their extensive array of great looking produce than to displaying their wines. Secondly, the family respects the heritage of their land which also includes an extended family spanning three generations currently being involved in their operations. Thirdly, there is an amazing focus on producing the best wines possible as Hanspeter Ziereisen combines his encyclopedic knowledge of his vineyards with his extremely creative and meticulous winemaking skills to make wonderfully expressive Pinot Noirs, Weissburgunders, Grauburgunders, and the local specialty Gutedel, which is also know as Chasselas in nearby Switzerland.
Weingut Muller (Region: Kremstal, Austria):In my ongoing search for very popular and high quality "local wineries" in each region, Weingut Muller was a delightful find. In addition to meeting a very nice family which has had vineyards in the Kremstal area for generations, I also found an extremely impressive and very modern state of the art winery that was effectively not even noticeable behind a street front of old buildings in the small village of Krustetten. The Muller family founded their winery in 1936 with the purchase of just one vineyard in the area and their astute knowledge of the local vineyards have now resulted in owning many prime vineyard parcels in the area, including vineyard sites originally planted between 600 and 800 years ago.
Tassilo (Region: Wachau, Austria): The Tassilo wnes are from the ancient vineyards of an Abbey in the Wachau that was founded in the year 777 by Duke Tassilo III. The Abbey records indicate that the vineyards were first planted in the year 893. The sites chosen for the vineyards at the time, which are still the same vineyards now, show insights and knowledge about viticulture that are still important today as a particularly barren and rocky site was chosen that also had a beneficial micro-climate near the Danube. The characteristics of the site produce a striking minerality, precision, and complexity to the wines which I immediately noticed with each wine during my initial visit.