Recently I created my first Wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Staffelter_Hof (more on that another time) about a place very close to my heart; a place, which over the last 10 months has taught me a lot about family, community, history and sustainability. It was delving into the history of Staffelter Hof that made me realise how much, even after 10 months of involvement with this fascinating Mosel estate, I still didn’t know about the place. It was this that spurred the idea of writing a series of blogs of my time spent with this wonderful, family owned winery and distillery. Here is my first instalment,
How I found Staffelter Hof
It was around February of 2011 during yet another sleepless night in London, that I was scrolling through Twitter (as I often found myself doing at 3am). There I saw a tweet from Generation Riesling, an open-minded and constantly growing group of young wine makers in affiliation with the Wines of Germany, who were asking for people from various countries involved in the wine trade to visit German wineries, to meet young, passionate wine makers and then transmit their adventures through various forms of social media.
I immediately applied and was soon approached by a winery in Germany’s 4th largest wine region, Württemberg, approximately 42 km North East of Stuttgart. At the time I was working with a New Zealand wine company, Morton Estates, and was in regular contact with our German distributor, Wine in Motion, I sent Florian the details of the German winery that had contacted me and asked him what he thought. He immediately replied, ‘If you are going to come to Germany to see wine country you MUST go to the Mosel, I will introduce you to someone I know there’.
So in March of 2011, at Prowein, Florian introduced to Jan Matthias Klein and within moments of our meeting we began making arrangements for my visit the following October. At that time I was 3 months away from finishing my degree in oenology and viticulture from Plumpton College and looking forward to the possibility of getting a chance to practice my newly learned wine making skills.
Originally my trip to the Mosel was to be for two weeks and even after working 12 hours a day, 6 days a week in the vineyards and winery I decided to continue my adventures in the Mosel for another 6 months. Staffelter Hof is not just a business selling wine but a living organism, a place where people live and love what they do, care about their land and environment and work with nature to produce something that they are proud of and want to share with others.
I leave for Provence in the morning but in my next instalment I will introduce you to the family members that make up Staffelter Hof.