GinTonic

When I grow up, I'll write an essay on energy in the bottle. Until then, I'm making this wine to prove my point.

I'm not much of a cocktail drinker, so I had to make a G&T of my own… Probably our most famous wine. When the 2015 juice (our first edition of this wine) was fermenting, its aroma was super reminiscent of juniper berries and its slightly bitter aftertaste of tonic. As a result, 1) everybody in the winery was constantly tasting it on barrel 2) it earned “GT” as a working title scribbled on the barrel - and the name has stuck with it ever since.

It's based on Sauvignon Blanc - hence the original claim “I am feeling supersonic, Sauvignon Blanc is my Gin and Tonic”. I remember a time when winemakers in our village used to say “if you don't have sauvignon in the cellar, you ain't no winemaker” because everybody was trying to make a hardcore “nettle-y” wine from unripe pyrazine grapes. So that they could wow visitors with an intensely aromatic white, in the vein of then-popular New World Savvys. All this at the expense of taste because - obviously - the prematurely picked grapes turned into wines that were quite... rickety.

But I wanted something else - something rich and flavoursome. Like whole milk, straight from the cow. For me, wine is always more important than the variety, so in 2017 we added a bit of Veltliner from the same clay / loess plots (Oplocenka, Otáhal and Babušák). Depending on the vintage, we use more or less skin contact.

The result is a wine that doesn't taste or smell like Sauvignon Blanc at all. Probably because I didn't try to assign any roles to it or shape it into some moulds; the only thing I cared about was to encapsulate and transfer the energy this wine had in the barrel.

The story behind the White Label I'm 200% positive that the most important thing is the person who makes the wine. It’s not about a varietal, or a famous village in a famous region - because even those wines can get the bad karma of being massacred in the cellar. It's all about the name on the bottle. A name you can trust, because you know how the winemaker works and that it's a style you enjoy. Hence the Nestarec white label, with my signature on it. (A tad prettier than IRL because my usual scribble is unreadable.) Together with Tereza, my graphic designer, we started taking out elements that weren’t essential - until only “Nestarec” and the name of the wine remained. A purist approach to both what's in the bottle and on it. Because, as they say, perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.

I don't wanna look like a natural born sage - it took me some time to get there. My journey, like many others, has been paved with gold engravings and curlicues, like on a fancy tombstone. “Nestarec, a wine for funerals”, as a friend of mine dubbed it back then. Oops. But I remember that period fondly - it's a part of my evolution. No regrets, like in that famous Edith Piaf song.

All the wines are made without any added sulfur (with the exception of Běl). Spontaneous fermentation with indigenous yeast, mostly a year or two in bigger old barrels from local oak or acacia wood. No fining or filtration. The normal way, simply put.

Wanna drink this?  These are the guys to ask where to get my wine in your country.

Files to download:

White Label

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