The St. Pauls Cooperative Winery

 

The St. Pauls Cooperative Winery was founded in 1907. 36 wine growers from St. Pauls, Missian, Berg and Unterrain took part in the founding meeting. The first chairman was Anton Schwarzer and the first cellar master Josef Abraham from Girlan. Until the new winery building was constructed on the eastern edge of the village in 1908, the harvest was stored in various private cellars in the village as well as in the “Schwarzer Adler” inn, which the newly founded cooperative had acquired. The new building was erected on land belonging to Anton Kager. The plan was drawn up and masonry work carried out by the Eppan master builder, Segna. Two cellars, one above the other (storage capacity approx. 15,000 hectolitres), two other rooms (a fermenting cellar and a workshop), the office and a cellar master’s apartment all formed part of the original building. A steep access ramp behind the building led to the upper floors where the grape mash was unloaded, which is still the case today.

By 1914 the number of members had increased to 60. The cellars were equipped with modern machinery. A Saurer truck was purchased in 1920, and was one of the first heavy goods vehicles in the area.

Good quality was already an important factor in the 1920s. According, for example, to the cooperative’s chronicle, members were expected to plant only “high quality vines” and consideration was also given to protecting the quality wines, especially those from Missian.

In 1933 the winery celebrated its 25th anniversary (and 25 years of service by Josef Abraham). On average, the 130 members supplied over 17,000 hectolitres of grape mash per annum. 1951 was a record year, with over 28,000 quintals of mash being supplied. 1957 saw the celebration of the winery’s 50th anniversary. At that time the cooperative numbered 141 members, with the amount of mash supplied having risen to 17,000 quintals and the storage capacity in the cellar to 27,000 hectolitres of wine. Since the 1960s, more tractors have been used in agriculture, gradually replacing teams of oxen as the main means of transport for the mash. Since the mid-1960s the grapes have also been delivered whole (rather than crushed) in tubs or grape vats, which means that the wine is produced in a more gentle fashion in the cellar.

After 60 years of existence, in 1967 the winery cooperative numbered 162 members. In 1968 a fully-automated bottling plant was purchased, and in 1974 a sales room was added in the courtyard. In 1979/80 a large storage building was erected to the north of the site and the plant was updated to take account of new technology (modernisation of the way in which the mash was received into the plant using new lifting platforms, replacement of the larch barrels by steel tanks).

In 1992 the cooperative celebrated 85 years since it was founded and the existing salesroom was converted into today’s modern vinotheque and seminar room.

Since 1997 Leopold Kager has been the chairman of the winery St. Pauls. In 2007, the winery St. Pauls celebrates its centenary with 215 members.

The assortment of the winery consists of the classic line "ST. PAULS", with all the typical wines of South Tyrol and the line "PASSION" with wines full of charisma, which are matured in wooden barrels. Excepionally is the Pinot Bianco SANCTISSIMUS developed in amphoras, which since 2014 has complemented the selection of the cellar and is only produced in special vintages.

 



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