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Prowein 2020, Düsseldorf

15-17 March 2020
Hall TBC / Stand TBC

Thank you! Prowein 2019 was fun. 2020 will be even better!

Our 10 top tips for Prowein

  1. Book your hotel in Dusseldorf 6 months ahead. Hotels are pushing prices to 300 EUR a night easily. You can find airbnb accommodation outside of Dusseldorf for much cheaper, and rent a car.

  2. If you are in Dusseldorf, try the Japanese restaurants. Dusseldorf had for a long time after WWII the largest expatriate Japanese community in Europe. They used Dusseldorf as a base to be in the center of Europe’s industrial region. As a result, there are plenty of affordable and delicious restaurants, and still some streets full of Japanese tea shops and travel agencies. Worth booking a few weeks ahead for a table on Klosterstrasse in one of the many top sushi joints, like Yabase. You can also try a Ramen restaurant like Takumi Tonkotsu, or even go for the all you can eat, fixed price extravaganza like Okinii.

  3. Another classic venue to visit is Schumacher brewery on Oststraße 123. They make their own beer, and there is nothing more pleasing than a fresh beer after having drunk wine all day. Beware it can get very crowded to get in during peak Prowein, but if you can get a seat, the food isn’t bad either, and the atmosphere is fantastic.

  4. Sounds silly, but ladies, wear very comfortable shoes (men also of course!). Seating at the stands is often limited, and Prowein is massive, getting bigger every year. You can easily walk >5km in a day, dehydrated and hungry. Sounds fun.

  5. Food at the fair is OK. There is a tent near Hall 11 with some good stands, but you really need to get there before 11:45 to avoid the long queues. Believe it or not, one of the national dishes is called “curry-wurst”. It is sausage (the wurst as they call them), with ketchup mixed with curry powder. Apparently the ketchup and curry came from a British soldier, someone mixed it all together, and it’s now one of the most popular dishes in Germany, with a museum to back it up. If you miss your chance at the fair, you can have one with grilled potatoes on the way out at the airport.

  6. It’s quite difficult to find the right balance of detail and time efficiency, so if you are a wine buyer, always best to say how much time you have, and what you are looking for. Makes us wine sellers better able to adjust. Most of us also have bottles of water, so feel free to ask for a glass to hydrate.

  7. Weather, it can be freezing cold in March, as it can be nice and warm. Pack accordingly.

  8. Your entrance ticket also gets you free access to public transport in Dusseldorf

  9. The German sense of humour is actually quite good, though if you are English, deadpan humour is misunderstood in much of continental Europe, so you should smile at your own jokes to let it be known you are trying to be funny. If in need, you can always fall back on the “German sausage jokes are the wurst” (see above point 5).

  10. Try to plan your day meticulously and efficiently, to avoid running from one hall to the next and back again 5 times in the day. There are some buyers who every year book a slot and manage to show up on the dot, showing us their long list of stands and their plan for the day, and trying to keep a few hours for “discovery” or splitting the team in 2-3 to divide and conquer. Surely not easy to prepare, but easier on the day for everyone.

Or contact Andrew on
+33 (0) 6 65 64 39 86 or
info@chateaustjacques.com

 
 
 

Charlotte, Andrew and Graham will be there, sharing a stand with our friends Rives Blanques from nearby Limoux.

Aline, Graham and Charlotte at another fair this year

Aline, Graham and Charlotte at another fair this year

Summary for wine professionals

Chateau Saint Jacques d’Albas is an independent family-owned vineyard in the hills close to Carcassonne. We take an organic approach to viticulture with very low yielding vines, applying the Cousinié protocol to reach the optimal mineral balance for our terroir and our vines. We make "fruit-first" wines, supported by complex yet soft tannins, that we feel manifest the potential for the Minervois and as recognised by the likes of Wine Advocate and Jancis Robinson.

Team
§  Graham and Andrew Nutter - Father and son owners
§  Charlotte Wilkerson - Business Development, WSET level 3 diploma
§  Arnaud Mayade - Head Régisseur, Oenologue with over 25 years’ experience
§  Aline Wansch - Sales Support & Admin, WSET level 2 diploma
§  Richard Osborn - Consultant Oenologue, advisor to both New and Old-World vineyards

Domaine (more details)
§  27 Hectares of vine on clay and sandstone soil
§  Protected by 60 Hectares of forest and “garrigue” (local vegetation)
§  Rich natural ecosystem of plants, birds, and animals
§  Mediterranean semi-arid climate with ~300 days sunshine per year.
§  Slight elevation (~100-150m). Topography sloping up from the sea, providing a breezy corridor to control humidity, keep the vines dry and protect from rot (easier to embark on minimalist and organic approach)

History (more details)
§  Populated in Roman times, on one of the “Saint Jacques de Compostelle” routes
§  11th century Chapel built over historic “energy lines” (protecting the vines?)
§  Acquired by Mr Nutter in 2001 and entirely renovated over 15 years. New winery, underground cellar, concerts, tourist facilities

Approach (more details)
§  Heavily limit yields with high quality clones, and take organic approach to managing soil and vines using the Cousinié protocol
§  Improve long-term health of the vines by providing natural nutrients to soil
§  Focus on improving soil and vine’s natural resistance to pests, diseases and environmental stresses. Less intervention, yield stability and better grape

Wines (more details)
§  4 red wines, based mostly on Syrah and Grenache, complemented by a Vermentino and Viognier white, and two Grenache and Mourvèdre based rosés
§  70,000 bottles in a modern, temperature-controlled winery
§  Exported throughout Europe, Asia and North America

Chateau St Jacques - Photo gamme.jpg
 
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