Translation of article from Rhein Main Presse (Fall of 2007)

He comes from Sunny California, but in the moment he is very happy in grey Rheinhessen.
Andrew George is working as a winemaker for the company Trautwein.

by Kathrin Damwitz

 

With the position of winemaker is Andrew George responsible for the quality of the wines and the operations of the cellar. "We want to make the best wines possible," says the 29 year old in near flawless German.

What captured him in beautiful Resinhessen? Love was it - He met his girlfrield Carmen Burckhardt from Waldlaubersheim in the Nahe region in 2002, when she was doing an internship related to her studies in the wine business. George learned about winemaking and received a BA from a university. He then worked at three wineries in California before traveling to New Zealand, Romania and western Australia. "There I always helped for a few months during the wine harvests," he explains. As he went to Romania for the second time, he met Carmen again and decided to stay with her for a while in Germany. He found a position in a state-run winery in Weinsberg where he renovated the white wine library. And then, a bit more than two years ago, he came to the Trautwein winery in Lonsheim.

His workspace there is mainly between the huge stainless-steel tanks and also in the laboratory. Here he and his fellow employees control the quality of the Trautwein wines - the acid, sugar, SO2, and alcohol are all under strict control. Also on the tanks the fermentation temperatures need to be closely monitored. "We are a team that works well together," says Andrew George, and the Cellar Master Alfons Eberhardt nods accordingly. Every year, between 35-40 million liters of wine are produced at the winery in Lonsheim.

The young American values the big variety of grapes and wines produced in the Rheinhessen region. Most of all, he thinks Pinot Noir has great potential here. He also doesn't forget the long history of winegrowing in Rheinhessen. "Here there was wine before America was even a country," he says laughing. Through hundreds of years of experience, the Rheinhessen winemakers have been able to determine exactly which grape and soil produces a specific wine - a clear advantage to newer wine regions such as Australia or California.

Not only professionally, but also in private life do Andrew and his girlfriend spend lots of time with wines and different wineries. Andrew George loves Pinot Noir, a Scheurbe, or a good Reisling. "But it needs to be a Reisling Classic from Trautwein," says Andrew. When he visits his relatives in the USA, he always has a few bottles of Rheinhessen wine in his luggage. When he is with his parents, who live in a region near San Francisco, he goes always to the beach. Surfing is something that he misses here in Rheinhessen and on the Nahe.

Currently he is not moving back to the homeland. "We are currently satisfied with everything and we are receiving a visit from my parents for Christmas," he says. He finds the Rheinhessen region very nice, and enjoys all the nice people he meets.

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