Diary #4 of Laëtitia Allemand, winemaker at the German Domain: How does one become a winemaker? By a happy coincidence and by passion! That's how the German family's wine adventures started...
It all started in the early '50s. When my grandfather leaves to do his military service, he is posted to Champagne. A region he doesn't know yet and with which he will fall madly in love! What he likes in Reims are the trips with his winegrower friends, the conviviality, the sharing, the work of the land... He doesn't know it yet but he has just found his vocation!
When he returned to the Alps in 1954, he was certain: he too wanted to become a winemaker, to make his own vintages, to bottle them on the estate and to make "quality" wines as they were then called.
At the time, this was not common in the Alps. Each family owns a few plots of vines for their personal consumption of wine, but the grapes are transported to the cooperative to be pressed and shared with those of other growers. The vintages which then come out of it are not very qualitative...
My grandfather will be the first in the region to devote himself entirely to viticulture and to bet on the quality of his grapes and his wines.Its first vintages will be sparkling white wines made according to the Champagne method. A way to pay tribute to the region that has inspired her so much and to remain faithful to her Champagne friends who regularly come to visit her.
Even today we perpetuate this tradition by vinifying a traditional method with an extremely fine and delicate bubble that is highly prized by our customers and friends.
In the 60's, the adventure continued and very quickly the estate developed. The Ministry of Agriculture at the time chose our vines to carry out an experiment and study the grape varieties best suited to mountain viticulture. We then discover, without great surprise, that mollard - the historical grape variety of this valley - is particularly well adapted to our terroir.
In 1964, my grandmother had the idea of opening a tasting cellar... Once again, she was the first to initiate this approach in the Hautes-Alpes. The estate then became a meeting place for all the bon vivants of the region. Wine lovers come from far and wide to experience the legendary welcome and hospitality of my grandmother! Even today, we have kept this tasting room as it is, and if you come to visit us, you will taste our wines paired with the vintage counter 100% formica .
A way for us not to forget Marcelle and Louis, my grandparents, who created the estate and wanted to place conviviality at the heart of their profession. For 3 generations we have kept in mind that, in the family, making wine is above all having a lot of passion for one's profession and a sense of sharing!
Laetitia Allemand (German Domain)
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