Today in our tour of the world’s Riesling vineyards, we come to Germany, a country that is steeped in historical muse and culture. Schloss Vollrads Wine Estate, located in Oestrich-Winkel, Germany, is a place of wonder, dedication, and some of the best premium wines in Germany. Their vineyards are dedicated to only one varietal, which is Riesling grapes. Although they focus on just one varietal grape, they produce up to fifteen different wines! While this may sound like a stretch, they have certainly proven it can be done and they have 800 years of experience to back them up.
Whether you choose a bottle from their Estate collection or one of their old-vine bottles, you are gaining a gem that you will not regret adding to your rack. We were particularly interested in learning about their “Edition” wine, which is selected by the staff as a whole! Each year the staff at Schloss Vollrads come together and select one wine that they can all agree is the best of the lot. This results in the “Edition” wine and it truly shows how every staff member is dedicated to producing excellent premium wines for the market. Every vineyard would be proud of that kind of teamwork and camaraderie.
You can say a vineyard has some of the highest standards when even their estate wines can be considered premium and this estate certainly makes that grade. Their estate wines, sparkling wines, old-vine labels, and even the brandy made with their Riesling grapes are all outstanding examples of master craftsmanship.
The winery does offer tours, which wind through several walking paths among the vineyard. This tour is not just a walk through Riesling vineyards, but quite literally a journey through history. The estate began as far back as 1097 with the first recorded sales showing in 1211. Note we say first “recorded” sales, as that is the oldest written account but we are certain this lovely estate was producing outstanding wine before that date.
The castle, itself, dates back to 1330 and construction was continually being completed to improve the property up until the passing of Erwein Count Matuschka-Greiffenclau in 1997. After this point, the banking group of Nassauische Sparkasse took over the operation and continues to run it today. Unfortunately, the passing of the Count ended the Greiffenclau family connection with the winery, though their dedication and high standards hold strong in the production of the wines.
Another facet to this historically amazing vineyard is the way they have taken to solar power. Their production is almost entirely powered by solar units, which allows them to produce wines that truly do promise a cleaner future! There is nothing more inspiring than an 800-year-old operation that has the ability to continue to provide a bright future for its community and the delicious wines they produce seem to really show how strong that dedication to the world can be.