Karl Johner Pinot Noir is a made in the Burgundian style – the focus at Johner is on wines full of structure but with purity and elegance.
After studying oenology in Geisenheim, Karl Heinz Johner spent ten years working for a large English winery (Lamberhurst Winery in Kent). Karl had always thought that Burgundy and Baden, which are not that far apart, have similar wine-growing conditions and decided that he wanted to make quality Pinot Noir in Germany. Therefore, in 1985, Karl and his wife Irene founded a little Weingut (Estate) in their home village “Bischoffingen” in the Kaiserstuhl. The Kaiserstühl is a volcanic outcrop in the Rhine valley which has an ideal climate and a unique terroir of mineral rich, volcanic ash soil. Having overcome the difficulties of the German wine laws, Karl Heinz Johner has established himself as a pioneer of a new German wine style. Today, with his son Patrick at the helm, Karl H. Johner is considered one of the best wine estates in southern Germany and the vineyards cover some 17 hectares in Bischoffingen and surrounding areas.
Karl Johner Pinot Noir is made from 100% Pinot Noir which comes from vineyards growing on volcanic ash and loess soils. The vineyards undergo intense canopy management, de-leafing and a 50% green harvest. Careful handpicking and exact grape sorting is compulsory. The grapes undergo 4 weeks of skin contact fermentation, 100% destemmed, a malolactic fermentation follows after 6 months. The wine is aged in used oak barrels for 20 months prior to release.
Pinot Noir is also known as Blauer Spätburgunder or Spätburgunder in Germany.