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The gold of the Paleolithic

"What we're gonna do right here is go back, way back, back into time."

On Thasos we have both. Ochre and red chalk (sanguine). The base of the wine is the ground on which they grow. After a long research and the realisation that Thasos can offer not only viticultural treasures, but also mineralogical ones, we could make a test run with a very special substance. The use of pigments has certainly been known since the middle Stone Age and was used in the sheltering caves for rituals of various kinds as well and took place as a component of creative processes. With this backpack of history, we asked ourselves of a combination with one of the oldest fermented beverages of mankind. Wine.

Successful education is always self-education. New life grows on the remains of past violence, because red chalk and ochre were very much in demand in the Paleolithic period. Developing a clan structure around such a mine was considered a privilege; this status was naturally protected with all power because the source was limited.

The special thing about this material, which was again used as a colouring medium in the arts, especially in antiquity and the Renaissance, is its colour fastness. These are components from the palette of iron oxides. The more developed the oxidation of iron, the higher the degree of colouration.

In this period of the beaten stone, the search was always on for harder material. The tool was created to recover the softer substance. Following this analogy, we went in search of the old quarry site and recovered a few kilograms for sampling. We immediately became aware of the history inherent in this spoil heap and felt the heat of the day as well as the time. A magical location conserved and we could locate the Holy Mount Athos - we realised why this place is also sacred because of its unique view.

The future arises in the past and the spiritual originator is once again the wine, which is also exposed to such oxidation processes. So the connection is obvious. In the same way, wine has been air- and sun-dried for centuries, and not only in the Mediterranean region. Whether it is the wine of the island of Samos, air-dried grapes of the Valpolicella, Trockenbeerenauslese wines of Germany or straw wine in the Jura (France), it is always about the typicity of the region and the concentration of the ingredients, taking into account a very specific terroir. Thus our inspiration was born. From now on, we dry a small tranche of grapes every year for about 14 days on the ochre.

Only in dialogue with the solitude does time condense in the depths. The grapes shrink and their inner values are concentrated - the new wine emerges and is now enriched by the signature of the red chalk. After a maceration in the amphora of about 4 months, we press the nectar. Viscous yet rich in alcohol, this product becomes a dessert wine in a class of its own.

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