Alex Götze and Christoph Wolber were bitten by the same Burgundy-bug and ended up meeting each other in Beaune, both on their own wine-pilgrimage. Alex was born and raised in the area of Dresden and came to wine through architecture. Christoph was raised in Baden and a bottle of Bernard van Berg was so compelling that he ended up just jumping on his motorcycle and heading east.
Over 5+ years, both garnered pretty serious Burgundian credentials, working at Comte Armand, Bernard van Berg, Leflaive, de Montille, Pierre Morey and Domaine de la Vougeraie. Alex, in fact, remains the vineyard manager for de Montille. How can he work for de Montille and be involved in winemaking in Baden? The holy land of Pinot Noir is only about two-and-a-half hours due southeast from Baden!
Similar to Enderle & Moll, the Wasenhaus Pinot Noirs show an uncommon lightness and clarity; a finesse that embarrasses just about all other German Pinot Noirs. While Enderle & Moll tends to present more tense, a bit more structured and wild, the Wasenhaus wines are ultra-fine, with a textural elegance that is second to none. If Enderle & Moll is punk rock; Wasenhaus is chamber music – one isn’t better than the other, but they are very different.
The focus at Wasenhaus is old vines, old clones, and curious parcels that dot the landscape of southern Baden. Alex and Christoph seek out vineyards that have been ignored because they are too hard to work or because the yields are too low. The farming is organic with elements of biodynamics woven in. They own very small plots near Staufen where the winery is located as well as buy grapes from specific farmers and specific plots in Kaiserstühl (40ish minutes away). The winemaking is low intervention. The white wines are all whole-cluster pressed with a basket press; the élevage is in neutral barrels of varying sizes. The reds are fermented in open-top vats and then aged in neutral barrels as well. Only natural yeast are used, and all wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered. Sulfites are only used at bottling and minimally.
Wine Advocate 8/13/2020
"Wasenhaus is one of the most sought-after producers in Germany today. Earlier this year, I reported on the 2017s, so here come the 2018s, which are terrific as are the 2017s that I wasn't able to review before. If you own them, be happy. If you don't, you know your goals. Christoph Wolber and Alexander Götze benefit from the run on their wines, yet they hope that a least a few wine nerds have the patience to cellar them for a couple of years because 'the wine will pay back,' as Alexander says. The friends hold back a few hundred bottles for a late release in a couple of years. At least then this should open the eyes of the Wasenhaus hunters."