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The Becker estate the Becker estate is located in Schweigen, very far south of the Pfalz on the border of Alsace. In 1973, when Fritz Sr. took over the estate from his father, he stopped selling grapes to the local co-op and started bottling and selling his own wines. He was one of the first that independently—albeit in parallel with Dr. Heger, Fürst and Meyer-Näkel—started using barriques for his Pinots. In the beginning he was very frustrated with his attempts to successfully, in his words, “transfer the gift of nature into fine wine”, as his colleagues in France had been doing for many years, but for many years now, the estate has been one of the top Pinot Noir producers in Germany, and the best Becker Pinot Noirs compare favorably with the best Burgundy has to offer.
In 2005, Fritz Jr. took over the winemaking at the estate; his father continued to oversee the outside vineyard work. Not long after, the Beckers started to work with lower must weights more in the range from 92-98 Öechsle rather than previously with 100 Öechsle or more, having learned that physiologically ripe fruit needs acid more than additional sugar.
The Beckers now produce over 12,000 cases annually from their 28 hectares of vineyards. Plantings are 60% Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, 22% Riesling, and the remaining 18% includes Silvaner, Gewürztraminer and Muskateller.
Newcomer of the Year in 2006, for eight of the last nine years this estate produced Germany’s top Pinot Noir as chosen by Gault-Millau.