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A Family Business

The Bott property

A real Alsace welcome

 

The Bott family will be delighted to welcome you, seven days a week, in the reception and tasting area, which can accommodate up to 55 people. This innovative, modern facility includes a shop and a more private tasting area where you can sample our wines and learn how they are made.

 

An environmentally-friendly approach

 

At Bott Frères, sustainable agriculture and a respect for biodiversity have always been part of our family values. Only a terroir that is loved and respected can produce exceptional wines.

 

Family portraits…

 

BOTT, a passion passed on from father to son

Pierre Laurent BOTT

 

Now 88 year-old, he visits the winery twice a day where he takes great pleasure in catching up on news of our customers.

 

Laurent Edouard BOTT

 

Laurent takes meticulous care in the winery, where he vinifies the wines with Paul, passing on his skills and knowledge.

 

Nicole BOTT

 

Dynamic, audacious and determined, Nicole travels the world developing our wine sales.

 

Paul Pierre Gustave BOTT

 

Bringing a fresh approach, thanks to his international experience, Paul is meticulous at every stage of the process, applying his motto: “Quality in the vineyard, in the grapes and in the wine”.

 

Our heritage

1835 - Creation of the Bott property
1835 > 1848 – A difficult period

Unpredictable weather

Unpredict-able weather did not allow the consistent production of high quality wines in Alsace, with the exception of Ribeauvillé, whose winegrowers established an excellent reputation for the region.

Frédéric Laurent BOTT

Frédéric Laurent BOTT (1831-1888) followed in the footsteps of his father Philippe Louis.
Wine sales were increasing but the phylloxera epidemic obliged him to develop the brewery side of the family business.
1880 – A new beginning

Frédéric Laurent BOTT

From 1880, Frédéric Laurent BOTT replanted the vines using American rootstock, and the growth of wine sales was re-established.
Sales were mainly at the local level, in Germany (Alsace was German from 1871) and in Switzerland, where the wines of Ribeauvillé-Riquewihr were considered to be the best in the region.

Bott Frères

Paul David Gaston BOTT (1863-1932) and his brother Adolphe Frédérique Laurent BOTT (1860-1918), took charge of the property and abandoned the brewery business, devoting themselves entirely to winegrowing.
Their collaboration marked the birth of “Bott Frères” as a trading name.
1893 – The path to success
1898 – Dedication and growth
Early 20th century – Launch of the first Crémants

The start of the 20th century brought poor weather and mildew (a fungus that attacked fruit trees).

The Bott brothers decided to distil their own grape brandies and other fruit brandies, to enable the family business to survive.
The extended period of bad weather damaged the reputation of the wines of Ribeauvillé and Riquewihr: to remedy this, the BOTT brothers and other producers developed a sparkling wine known as crémant.
First World War – The beginning of export

Frédéric Paul BOTT (1898-1992) and his brother Georges Gaston BOTT (1897-1952) both worked on the family property.

During the First World War, like most of the inhabitants and businesses in Ribeauvillé, the Frères Bott provided accommodation for soldiers.
The main house was occupied by troops from 1914 to 1918.

In 1918, Alsace became French again, and the market evolved.
Customers no longer came to buy wine directly at the property, and other marketing and distribution techniques had to be developed.
New customers and other importing countries had to be found.

The two brothers launched a river-based export trade, mainly to the Scandinavian countries, from the port of Illhaeusern.

Second World War – Liberation and development

Pierre Bott's account (1928) :

“We were the first winery to be visited by the Americans, as Fielding D. Tucker recounts in his memoirs.
The Americans were lodged in the buildings at the back of the yard, where they had a canteen that fed the troops in the Poche de Colmar.
The property was also used as a repair station for vehicles damaged in the fighting; they had a substantial store of spare parts that was left behind when the troops left in February 1945.
The American soldiers also wanted to set up billets between the barrels on mattresses and beds that we were glad to provide.
That was when I discovered chocolate, ketchup and chewing gum. As for us, after their arrival, we slept under the casks.”

Frédéric Paul’s sons, Pierre BOTT (1928) and Edouard BOTT (1930-2008), managed the property together. In 1953, Edouard left the property to join his aunt and manage his mother’s family property in Beblenheim.
Pierre BOTT developped direct sales to wine merchants, restaurants and export (Germany and Switzerland). He regularly delivered wines himself to bordering countries.

A very committed and active member of the wine industry and political life in Ribeauvillé, he was Président of the Ribeauvillé Wine Union for 30 years, President of SAFER (responsible for agricultural land management), Grand Master of the Brotherhood of Saint Etienne in 1983, and participated in the municipal council for three mandates, including one as deputy mayor.

His work in the defence of the interests of winegrowers was recognized in 1978 when he was made a Knight of the French Order of Agricultural Merit and an Officer of the Ordre of Agricultural Merit on 21 January 1985.

Now 88 years-old, Pierre BOTT visits the winery twice a day, where he takes great pleasure in keeping up with news of our customers. He also participates in the vinification process, during which his comments and advice are much appreciated by Laurent and Paul.
From the 1980s to the present day… The pursuit of excellence!

Having completed his studies at the Viticultural Lycée in Beaune, Laurent BOTT began working at the property in 1978.
He increased wine production and invested in modern winery, that included facilities for wine tourism.
A keen gourmet, with a gift for befriending new customers, Laurent BOTT developed restaurant sales, with the result that Bott Frères wines are served on some of France’s finest tables.

Nicole Bott married Laurent in 1983, who passed on to her his passion and knowledge of winegrowing. She soon came to be known as a representative of the property.
Ambitious, audacious and determined, Nicole travels the world developing sales. BOTT wines are currently available in more than 29 countries.
A perfectionist, but always open to new ideas, Nicole is a powerful force on all fronts!

Strongly committed to promoting Alsace wines, she is a member of the CIVA committee, and was named “Madame Wine Tourism” of 2016.
She was also made a Knight of the National Order of Agricultural Merit in 2015.

Some examples of the property’s first labels…

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