Alsace wine producer: Meyer-Fonné, Katzenthal

When visiting winemakers in Alsace, it happens rarely that a wine producer spontaneously mention any colleague, and it is good manners to not bring up the subject. But I understand that there is great admiration of the Meyer-Fonné among colleagues, and especially admired is the technical skill that Félix Meyer possesses. Félix Meyer now manages this 12 ha domaine, that exploits vineyards in seven communes.

As a visitor, the skill and dedication immediately becomes obvious. At Meyer-Fonné, there is not one single wine that falls out of context, that is dull or unbalanced. All are characterized by uncompromising quality. The flavors are always intense, but never without harmony.

Meyer-Fonné has also, together with one or two colleagues, managed to convince the world that Katzenthals Grand Cru, the relatively unknown Wineck-Schlossberg, can produce wines of very high standard. Wineck-Schlossberg is located on granite around the old 1300-century castle Wineck. The character of a Wineck-Schlossberg is always elegant, and a Riesling from this terroir to be fresh, vigorous and compact, and show a crystalline style with pronounced minerality. AS with similar Grands Grus, for example Frankstein, botrytis are undesirable and could easily mask the terroir.

As many other vineyards located by the forest edge, Wineck-Schlossberg attracts wild boar, which feast on the ripe grapes. But here it has a cure: by putting up tufts of hair on the posts in the vineyard, the beasts are kept away.

Félix Meyer has access to the five Grands Crus, including the classic Schoenenbourg and Sporen, both in Riquewihr. The domaine offers a unique series of first-class Grand Cru Gewurztraminer, ranging from wonderfully lively Kaefferkopf, to the stunning, smoky and complex Sporen.

But even more exciting is the firm's three Lieux-dits. Here is Hinterburg on granite (which gives fresh Pinot Gris), Dorfburg on calcareous marl (which provides overwhelming Pinot Gris at the VT level) and - a personal favorite - Phoeller. Phoeller sits on muschelkalk and generates outstanding, razor-sharp Riesling. This is a wine with a very unique character that is well worth cellaring.

In addition to the wines, the environment and the genuine hospitality there is yet another reason to visit Meyer-Fonné: The price level is still very reasonable.

Last visit: 2011.



Key person
Félix Meyer
24 Grand-Rue, Katzenthal
+33 (0)389 27 16 50
+33 (0)389 27 34 17 (fax)
Price Range (2010)
Riesling Réserve €7,20
Riesling Grand Cru Schoenenbourg €15
Complex wines with intense flavours and true terroir character.
Sympathetic, welcoming and knowledgeable.
Grands Crus: Kaefferkopf, Schlossberg, Schoenenbourg, Sporen, Wineck-Schlossberg
Lieux-dits: Dorfburg, Hinterburg, Phoeller


Representative wines 2010

Hidden Treasure
2008 Pinot Gris Réserve Scent of lemon, mango, mint, banana and vanilla. The taste is silky and fresh with lemon caramel with lively but definitely not aggressive acidity, lovely texture and a resounding finish. Best in class!
Everyday Riesling
2008 Riesling Vielles Vignes Greenish-yellow, saturated color. Open, fresh and fruity scent with lemon, grapefruit and melon. Juicy, solid, acidic taste with lots of everything. Except sugar of which there is none. Very, very good!
Top Range Riesling
2008 Riesling Grand Cru Wineck-Schlossberg Magnificent aroma of almond, mango, smoke and minerals. The taste is medium bodied, rich, juicy, beautiful and with tons of ripe fruit and delicious and zesty acids.
Most Exciting Wine
2008 Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Kaefferkopf Powerful aromas of citrus, flowers, a spicy minerality. Stylish, relatively light (for a Gewurtz) and mellow flavor with balanced sweetness, a very long finish and a unique salinity. An amazing wine for only € 14.50!