Weingut Karl Haidle
Posted on July 21 2022
For a long time, Germany has been mostly known for its slender Riesling bottles with delightful off-dry styles from the Mosel or Nahe region. Of course, there was also Black Tower and Liebfraumilch but let’s not go there, we all moved on. Nowadays there is a sense of change in the air with many talented young winemakers driving quality across Germanys various winegrowing regions. Many are in a generational transition taking over the baton from their parents.
Meet Moritz Haidle, one of those young winegrowers that is currently rocking the German wine scene and especially the region of Württemberg, or to be exact Stetten – just a stone’s throw away from Stuttgart, the home of Daimler and its Mercedes cars.
Initially, Moritz had no intention of becoming a winemaker, in fact he was more interested in Battle Rap and his stage name was “Ritzling” – just like one of his estate Rieslings. Even as a child, he loved to draw, and was rarely found without a pencil in his hand. He gave up his original plans of becoming a transportation engineer in favour of wine. He seeks out respite from the daily grind in hip hop, graffiti painting, and still – time providing – freestyling in rap battles.
Over the years though, wine began to play a more important part of his life. Asked why he wanted to become a vintner, he said “Family tradition certainly played a role, but the decisive factor was an internship at the Rudolf Fürst winery in the Franken region. That’s what really awakened the passion for making wine in me!” Though his Hip Hop background defined his persona for many years and still plays a big part in his life he does not want it to overshadow his wines which he feels should be the centre of attention.
The family’s winery had its humble beginning in 1949 when Karl Haidle, a former and highly accomplished gymnast, laid the foundation of what would become one of Württemberg’s leading wineries. Historically, and to some extent up until today, this region is dominated by cooperatives but Karl wanted none of it and from the get go was focused on estate bottlings.
He was also the first to plant Kerner, back then known as Samling 2530 – The Geisenheim institute assigns codes rather than names for hybrid crosses until they become widely planted and receive an official name. In fact, Moritz’s father Hans told him “you can do whatever crazy things you want but you have to do something with Kerner” hence the bottling Samling 2530 which is a great intro into the natty wine world.
Hans Haidle took over the estate very early due to his fathers’ premature death and grew the estate from 2.5ha to 23ha and has formed the reputation of today’s top Rieslings from the Pulvermächer vineyard site. His strive for quality and perfection earned him the Federal Achievement Award many times.
Moritz joined the family estate in 2014 as its new winemaker following various apprenticeships and earning a degree in Viticulture and Oenology from Geisenheim. Taking up the torch for his father’s unflagging dedication to quality, Moritz successfully transitioned the estate to organic and Demeter certified biodynamic farming. He has concentrated the estates’ focus on Riesling and Lemberger, also known as Blaufränkisch with our Austrian friends, as well as small portion of Kerner for family tradition. Asked how he would define the wineries philosophy he says “The organic cultivation of Riesling and Lemberger, spontaneously fermented and puristic in style” which really sums it up nicely.
And as to his future goals? Well, World Wide Württemberg would do just fine, so here at the Good Wine Shop we like to play our part and shine a bright light on to the wine region of Württemberg and our new friend and partner Moritz from Weingut Karl Haidle.
Before a hybrid/cross receives an official name, it is being given a numerical code by the Geisenheim institute. 2530 is Kerner, a grape with a long tradition in Württemberg and history linked to the Haidle farm. Extended maceration on the skin and unfiltered. Aromatic white stone fruit, grapefruit and cloudberry notes, touch of yeastiness, extended skin contact – a beginners guide to natural/orange wine.
A light, easy and uncomplicated estate wine with a graffiti label completing the link to Moritz’s other passion in life. Super lifted aromatics, crunchy green apple, lime and lemon peel and a good balance of acidity.
The perfect introduction to Lemberger aka Blaufränkisch, especially if you are looking for a chillable red wine this summer. Super fresh aromatics, black cherry, wild raspberry, plum, a bit of tealeaf and cedarwood followed by notes of pepper and nutmeg. Notable but not overwhelming tannins combined with a fine acidity.
An impressive VDP Grosses Gewächs made with the future in mind. It will be at least 4-5 years before this wine reaches its full potential. For the impatient, we recommend decanting at least 2 hours in advance of serving. A big wine, super rich and intense. Plum almost prune-like, ripe morello cherry, black forest gateau in a glass, blackcurrant and violets. Sweet cinnamon and cedar wood, hint of cigar wrapper. Dried fruit character really showing through from this warm vineyard site. Aged one and a half year on the lees in oak (1/3 new).