Established in Riquewihr in 1574, the Dopff family has dedicated itself to producing fine Alsatian wine for over 13 generations. A pioneering family, they were responsible for the stemmed wine bottles, which today still distinguish Alsace wines from other regions. In 1900, tenth generation Julien Dopff was so impressed by the Champagne tastings held in Paris, he learnt the art of winemaking in Champagne for two years before returning to Alsace. After WWII Julien Dopff strongly believed that a Crémant made from local grape varieties which reflected the terroir of Alsace should be protected. In 1976, together with five other producers, Dopff finally obtained official recognition for Crémant d’Alsace as an AOC. Their 70 hectares of vineyard are situated at 300 metres elevation, nestled in the foothills of the Vosges Mountains and since 2020 they hold the sustainable HVE certification.
Harvest started on 6th September 2018, with Auxerrois, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris; the Riesling grapes were harvested from 20th September. The yields were higher than the previous year and the fruit picked was in an excellent, healthy condition, due to the warm, dry ripening period throughout the summer. The fruit offers concentrated flavours, with excellent maturity.
The Grand Cru classified vineyard of Brand overlooks the town of Turckheim and reaches an altitude of 343 metres above sea level. The wines of the Brand vineyard have been highly reputed since the 14th century, covering 58 hectares, of which Dopff au Moulin owns 3.2 hectares. The vineyard faces south and south-east and features very steep slopes. The soil consists of “Turckheim granite” with black and white micas, which is characterised by a low water retention capacity. The steep slopes combined with the granite soils, contribute to the rapid warming of the soil, which helps to encourage the vine to mature. The Guyot pruned vines are green harvested and meticulous canopy management take place. Yields are extremely low at 26 hectolitres per hectare.
The grapes were manually harvested at 107° Oechsle. Gentle pneumatic pressing took place in whole bunches without crushing the grapes. A static racking of the must was followed by a slow temperature controlled fermentation in stainless steel. The wine was stored in old oak casks on the fine lees for several months.
Expressive notes of honey, spice and candied fruits lead to a refreshing and beautifully balanced palate. This full bodied and rich wine has great finesse.
Alsace Grand Cru