Anyone who talks to Jörg Geiger immediately feels the enthusiasm and passion with which this man runs his business. His great knowledge of the old regional fruit varieties and the almost missionary zeal with which he wants to preserve and use the Swabian orchards is simply enthralling the visitor. Whether it's a Bohnapfel (german kind of apple), a Gaishirtle (german type of pear) or a Gewürzluike (another kind of german apple), Geiger knows how to tell interesting stories about every variety.
In the beginning, Geiger was laughed at when he wanted to strengthen the old fruit varieties of the Swabian orchards. Too little yield, too difficult to harvest, too much work, they said. But at the latest after Geiger produced an excellent pear sparkling wine, which became known beyond the borders of Germany, the critics fell silent. The juice for this pear sparkling wine comes from the Champagne Bratbirne, an old Swabian pear variety that Duke Carl Eugen appreciated 200 years ago at court.
In recent years, non-alcoholic seccos have become increasingly important. In the meantime, the manufactory now generates three quarters of its sales with non-alcoholic beverages. The PriSecco is a real bestseller and meanwhile there are more than 30 different compositions. In the meantime, Geiger's critics have been silenced and there are more and more free riders instead. But despite all copies, Schlat's products remain the benchmark. No wonder, because Geiger lives what he does. He is not interested in making a quick profit, but wants to preserve and promote the old cultural landscapes.
»High quality and a business relationship at eye level, that's what I like.«
For many years he has also been experimenting with everything else that can be done with fruit brandies. Gewürzluiken-liquor in Scotch whisky barrels, Goldparmäne (type of fruit) in bourbon barrels or double distilled black currant in Madeira barrels are currently maturing in the cellar.
Geiger decided in favour of Speidel because of the high quality of the containers. Compared to other tank manufacturers, the smooth surface of the highly polished inner tank walls and series production in high quality stood out. This is why he equipped the new building of his manufactory with 42 Speidel tanks. In this way, he is able to compensate for the variability of the two-year fluctuation in fruit yield, and to offer sufficient quantities of his products at all times.
In the meantime, Jörg Geiger appreciates the cooperation not only for quality reasons, but also because of the similar way of thinking. Like the Geigers, the Speidels are also an entrepreneurial family with foresight and willingness to venture new things, he says. »Tackling challenges that others say won't work is the special attraction.«
Then they work it out and find a solution even for initial obstacles. This attitude impresses Jörg Geiger. It is a »business relationship at eye level«, he says and it is nice to work with like-minded people. We love to hear that and we can only return that compliment.