In the world of fine wines and refined taste experiences, few personalities in Germany shine as brightly and wield as much influence as André Macionga, a name that resonates within the sommelier community with a reputation for excellence and unwavering dedication. This charismatic sommelier has chosen the art of wine as his vocation and elevated it to lifelong achievement, earning awards and recognition that only a select few in this industry can claim as their own.
Presently, André Macionga not only crafts his cuvées but also operates the exclusive Restaurant Macionga in Berlin in partnership with the renowned chef Sebastian Leyer. This establishment's harmonious blend of top-notch wines and exquisite cuisine is a genuine delight for all the senses. In a world where wine is often regarded as an art form, André Macionga is undoubtedly a true artist. His expertise, passion, and unrelenting commitment to the wine culture make him a remarkable personality who has captured the hearts of not only the sommelier community but also wine enthusiasts at large.
Today, we have the privilege of introducing you to this exceptional individual whose expertise and experiences undoubtedly serve as a source of inspiration for all wine enthusiasts. So, let us commence our conversation with André and unveil the secrets behind his extraordinary success, along with his personal wine recommendations.
Welcome, André; it's a pleasure to have you with us!
How did you get started in the wine industry, and what drove you to become a sommelier?
My curiosity for pleasure led me to become a sommelier. I have always had a tremendous passion for tasting different flavours. This I may live out for 12 years with the creation of my wines at the André Macionga Cuvée, my winery on La Palma of Bodegas Macionga and especially, of course, in my Restaurant Macionga in Berlin Wilmersdorf.
What aspect of your job gives you more satisfaction?
To be able to learn something new every day. Every single bottle of wine that I open tells a story. And I enjoy it very much to be able to listen to them.
Are there any common misconceptions about wine that you would like to correct?
Absolutely. Wine is pleasure, and pleasure must be fun. It doesn't matter how much a wine costs or whether you know anything about it. As soon as the wine brings a smile to your face, it is a good wine.
Could you share a professional tip for wine serving or pairing with our readers?
First, I recommend choosing the right glass so the wine can present itself optimally. Furthermore, the temperature is one of the most important when serving wine. Red wine should never be served too warm, and white wine should never be too cool. Of course, everyone can decide this for themselves. Combined with the suitable dish, the texture of the wine is especially significant. As for the taste of the wine, you should go according to mood and personal taste.
Wine Recommendations by André Macionga
What are your five favourite white wines for the warm season, and what would you serve them with?
1. 2020 Riesling Nussbrunnen Schloss Reinhartshausen Rheingau
The typical citrus aromas and the scent of white peach and apricot make it unmistakable! On the palate, the wine presents a lot of extract, light mineral notes and a juiciness that never seems to end. Drink this wine with light appetizers or with oysters.
2. 2018 Pialini Cuvée André Macionga Cuvée & Schnaitmann Württemberg
An initially calm but consistent fireworks of fresh citrus notes and creamy texture. With a bit of time, the quiet fireworks become an increasingly dense harmony of the most diverse facets, full of pleasure. Pialini goes best with light fish dishes.
3. 2020 Mysterium Cuvée trocken Weingut Disibodenberg Nahe
Mysterium – from the Greek mysterion – initially stands for cultic celebrations with a secret core. An excellent companion for vegetarian dishes.
4. 2019 Es ist wie es ist Nr.9 André Macionga Cuvée & Horst Sauer Franken
Kumpquat dances with passion fruit. Smoky tobacco accompanied by wet peat streams with subtle vanilla. Ethereal mint, verbena, and lime leaves dance on the palate. The wine gets more and more melting with air without being filled. Young fresh tangerine. A mix of freshness and richness. Steam and power but not fat. The bitters stimulate a stark palate flow and leave you screaming for more. It is a perfect wine for all types of shellfish.
5. 2020 Schieferterrasse Heymann Löwenstein Mosel
Great animation, and the acidity is wonderfully grippy and tactful. The taste is just like the warm slate terraces, where the grapes grow – with great freshness and extremely high piquancy. Goes well with fresh salads and pickled vegetables.
What are the five favourite rosé wines and what dishes would you pair them with?
1. 2022 Evoé! Rose Rainer Schnaitmann Württemberg
Berry, spicy. Rhubarb, red currants, prickly and cranberries and red-cheeked apples. Accompanied by fragrant floral notes like violets and woodruff. The juicy, fruity acidity makes it a pleasure to drink. The finely spicy tannins and delicate melting give structure and depth. Goes wonderfully with fruity dishes.
2. 2008 Viña Tondonia Gran Reserva Rose Rioja
A rarity from Rioja, it is produced only in the best years. So much complexity, gentle smoothness and intensity are rare in a rosado. This elegant wine has retained wonderfully clear and fresh fruit aromas despite the long ageing period – it was in barrique for four years alone. Elegant, with great depth and a long finish: unique! Perfect with grilled vegetables.
3. 2021 Muse Rose Domaine de L'Ècu Loire
A wonderfully spicy rose. It is a very nice balance of seriousness and fun to drink. Perfect for the summer. Pairs wonderfully as an apéritif and with small snacks.
4. 2009 Parisy Vin de Table Rosé Emmanuel Reynaud Rhône
Emmanuel Reynaud's Château des Tours rosé is a pure delight, showing off a fruity explosion on the nose. It has a glycerine palate and proves to be rich, with good volume and a soft side. A rosé genuinely unique in its kind! Perfect with short roasted light meats.
5. 2021 La Negra Tomasa Azul Perdido La Palma
From a high altitude, Listán Negro vineyard, near El Paso. Gently pressed and vinified from free-run must. Fermented in steel tanks at pretty low temperatures. It's ambitious and fun to drink. Very lovely with steamed fish.
Could you share your favourite red wines that are suitable for a colder evening? Why are these your choices?
1. 2018 Komplex 19 André Macionga Cuvée & Disibodenberg Nahe
Restrained burgundy tones with a broad aromatic spectrum. It carries an incredibly animating acidity and a great play of cherry notes. The richness and concentration present themselves soft and silky on one side and more racy and spicy on others – the wine is very looking up. Excellent with braised red meat.
2. 2018 Gevrey Chambertin Clos Prieur Domaine Marc Roy Burgund
Clos Prieur is a magnificent wine from a particular terroir just below Mazis-Chambertin. On the nose, delicate, quite floral red fruits, cinnamon and perfumed by a relatively intense chalky earthy minerality. The palate is crisp and cool with this fine chalkiness that plays with the red berries. Very lovely with classic meat dishes.
3. 2013 Cims de Porrera Classic Priorat
Cims de Porrera is made exclusively from the old Cariñena variety. During the harvest is selected more than five times until only the very best grapes remain. The barrels are new and are replaced annually. No effort is too great to produce the few bottles of this super wine. It is the perfect wine for great barbecue fun.
4. 2019 Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC Amorotti Loreto Aprutino
Fermented spontaneously, natural yeasts on the grape skin, with little intervention, unclarified and unfined. Elegant, fruity on the palate, juicy cherries, some gunpowder on the nose, a wine with incredible potential. A dream taste with Italian high cuisine.
5. 2020 Blaufränkisch Lutzmannsburg Alte Reben Moric Burgenland
Already on the nose a powerful, engaging wine that literally pulls me into the glass. Seductive and rich, at the same time cool and elegant. Very inviting aromatics, brilliant spice, tobacco, cigar box, black tea, licorice. Sloe and mulberry with black cherry. Served with grandma's unique beef roulade.
Could you recommend five of your favourite champagnes for memorable moments?
1. Substance Blanc de Blanc Grand Cru Brut Jacques Selosse
A unique champagne with subtle brioche notes and the drinkability of melted butter. For me, one of the strangest champagnes I know. Pure concentration. Pairs perfectly with strong spicy dishes of any kind.
2. 2002 Millésime Grand Cru Egly Ouriet
Few champagnes are as captivating as these from Egly Ouriet. A perfect balance of vinosity and freshness. Champagne with infinite ageing potential. Perfect with well-aged cheese.
3. 2017 L'Ètoile de Berru Extra Brut Zero Dosage André Macionga Cuvée & Adam Mereaux
A particularly excellent atypical vintage! A fascinating noble perlage that penetrates the green. We lie in the dry hay and eat young pears, sniff unripe melons and enjoy the view of freshness. Wonderful with seafood
4. 740 Dégorgement Tardif Jacquesson
This champagne is like a complex dish. After each sip, the champagne shows a new side. I prefer to eat classic poultry dishes with it.
5. 2004 Cuvée Louis Tarlant
Cuvée Louis is composed of equal parts of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. A decadent bouquet of ripe yellow apples, lemon tart, dried wheat and a deep, yeasty brioche character, also slightly smoky, emanates from the glass. Best served with a dozen fresh oysters.
Thank you, André, it was a great pleasure!
Last Updated on February 5, 2024 by Editorial Team
As editor-in-chief, Raffaele infuses the magazine with a cosmopolitan flair, drawing from his experiences in London, Berlin, New York, and Barcelona. His 20-year tenure with luxury brands, coupled with a love for travel and food, enriches the magazine's content.