by Jeff Miller of Artisan Family of Wines (Seven Artisans, Sly Dog Cellars, Red Côte Rosé)
So this article appears on Palate Press recently:
Biodynamic Vineyards: Cosmic Bridge or the Turf of Witch Doctors?
I can’t tell you how tired I am of all this Biodynamics stuff, when I’ve devised a new, and far superior, method of farming based on the following precepts:
At flowering, the farmer should grind up 2 and half pieces of Matzoh (which produces Matzoh meal) and sprinkle them through the vineyard.
Grapes must be harvested only on the second night of Sukkoth (the Jewish harvest festival), ready or not. This year that falls on September 23. (Tough luck if you farm in the Southern Hemisphere).
No pork products allowed on the farm or in the wine (no pork gelatin fining, for example).
I call my new method the Yahwehist protocol. Since that’s kind of a tongue twister, feel free to call it the Matzoh Meal protocol if you’d like.
Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Biodynamics, considered Jews to be inferior, but is to be commended since he didn’t want to kill them (ala Adolph). I’ll go him one better. I don’t even consider Gentiles inferior. So I have a better pedigree.
So my kinder, gentler, farming method may lack a little empirical foundation. The matzoh meal treatment is particularly hard to figure out how it helps, but I’m convinced it does (and that’s all that counts). In fact, some of the best wine grapes grown (i.e., mine) follow the Yahwehist protocol (except I sometimes make an exception for the Sukkoth part, particularly if the grapes don’t taste very good, but we keep that part hush-hush). And if anyone doubts it, they should go to the first and foremost practitioner of Yahwehist farming, namely me. As for your doubts, just trust me—I know what I’m doing.
I think we should consider a taste-off between Biodynamics and Yahwehist wines. On second thought, maybe not such a good idea–far better to let the myth run its course than subject it to any empirical, and perhaps embarrassing, results. First and foremost, preserve the cult.
I must admit Biodynamics has some special modus operandi that have some real dramatic appeal. But think how gross they are. Buried cow’s heads. May sound a little romantic, but try doing it. Yuck. No, Matzoh meal’s cleaner and neater, and certainly as effective.
Some may question my methods as unsound. But I can reply with all honesty that I have as much to back me up as does old Rudolph. So why shouldn’t I get the same attention from the press?
“How could any of this work?” you might ask. But of course it works. It sells wine, doesn’t it?
Note: For a more serious discussion, I did a series of posts on Biodynamics recently (see http://artisanfamilyofwines.com/blog/?p=989, http://artisanfamilyofwines.com/blog/?p=995, and http://artisanfamilyofwines.com/blog/?p=998).