In the vinyard
Nature carries out the bulk of the work in the vineyards. Central to our winemaking is respect for and care of the landscape in harmony with nature. Healthy soil is the key. In our vineyards there is room for wild herbs and grasses which loosen the soil and give refuge to beneficial organisms. Reduced yields and gentle processing of the grapes also contribute to the distinctive character of our wines. In and around Bernkastel-Kues the vine variety Riesling, the world’s best white wine grape, covers approximately 90 % of our 2.5 hectares. Small, late ripening fruits yield unique, classy, aromatic wines. 10% Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) and Schwarzriesling (Pinot Meunier) round off our product range.
The steep slopes of our vineyards mean hard physical work but also guarantee full-bodied, expressive wines.
The wine year begins in January and February with pruning which is often carried out in freezing temperatures so we can tie down the vines in good time in March and April. A small incision in the vines ensures less yield which in turn guarantees extra rich wines. The weeks from May until the end of July are crucial for the development of the vines. The green shoots are inserted individually into the wire frames. During this time there is often an explosion of growth. At the beginning of July the shoots are trimmed and the foliage is mulched in the rows between the vines. Simultaneously careful, environmentally-friendly plant protection is necessary. We avoid the use of weedkiller and insecticides apart from minimal use should fungal diseases such as mildew occur. During these weeks there is rapid development from blossoms to pea-sized fruits, and soon it is time for manual work, the grapes need plenty of light and air so they get lots of sunshine and dry well. As soon as the grapes become soft we begin thinning them out. This restricts the yield and increases sugar content and extracts. The harvest begins in October. We place particular value on manual harvesting to increase quality and allow careful selection.
In the Cellar
The constant temperature in our wine cellar allows our wine to mature under ideal conditions. A gentle maturing process ensures the retention of the natural ingredients so that fruit and flavours can fully develop. In our old vaulted cellars we still use all of our up to 80 year-old classical wooden casks (Fuder casks) with a capacity of 1000 litres. Depending which type of wine we are producing we leave the must to ferment in a stainless steel tank or in a wooden cask. Our wines have time to mature and are stored in oak casks which “breathe” and provide ideal conditions for a continual maturation process. Great care and sensitivity thus create classy, delicately fruity wines.
From the other products given to us by nature we create sparkling wines and fine brandies.