In Hans-Peter's words:
Illusion 2016 is one of the lighter of our Pinot Noir, less Burgundy more Jura style though with lot of finesse and delicate tunes.
Grapes are hand harvested and partially destemmed. They ferment with indigenous yeast in 1000-litre stainless steel tanks for about 12 weeks during which time pigeage is performed. Some of the wine is transferred to used 400-litre oak barrels and the wine ages for 2 more years without intervention. The wine is bottled without fining or filtration and zero SO2 is added.
MYTHOPIA, HANS-PETER SCHMIDT, Arbaz, Valais
Nested high up in the Swiss Alps, above the town of Sion, in the tiny village of Arbaz, Hans Peter-Schmidt took over the production of these vineyards in 2004 and began converting the land to organics. Mythopia is a project designed to explore the effects of bio-diversity on wine production. The views from his vineyard are amongst the most jaw droppingly beautiful we have ever seen.
800 to 900m above sea level, on calcareous schist soil, Hans-Peter turned the vineyard into a “vine” garden. From day one, he rejected the use of any herbicide or pesticide, and have instead planted trees, flowers, plants, he installed bee-hives, lots of stones for the lizards, cultivated fruits and vegetables in between the rows. Augmenting and enriching biodiversity, reactivating the soil, giving back this complex balance to terroir, in order to gain more quality and aromas in his fruit.
Nature seemed to have been waiting for Hans-Peter’s impulse to start blooming again. No tillage in the vineyard, very little intervention, only letting nature grow according to its balance. In the cellar, Hans-Peter favours very long ageing in older, larger casks, without any unnecessary intervention.
Chasselas (Fendant), Pinot Noir, Sylvaner (Rèze), Muscat are all shining with a rare purity, so very expressive. Meditation wines, to be enjoyed with as much respect as Hans-Peter have put in crafting them…
Mythopia in Hans’ own words
“Facing the highest summits of the Alps, the steep slopes of the Mythopia vineyard have become a paradise, home to fragrant flowers, fruit trees, rare birds and more than 60 species of butterflies. It’s a vineyard exuding biodiversity where the ecosystem is sustained by a symbiotic network of uncountable species. The vineyard is no longer a hostile monoculture with naked soil but a beautiful natural system designed to produce grapes expressing the subtleties of its terroir. The soil is activated by accompanying plants and the air is full of the music of bumblebees and the perfume of wild blossoms. The grapes we harvest in Mythopia do not need any forcing interference with oenological substances. Our wines are made from grapes and air, nothing more.”