»Schloss Vollrads Riesling means pure Riesling«
Dr. Rowald Hepp, Schloss Vollrads
An 800-year-old wine tradition
Schloss Vollrads is one of the oldest wineries in the world, with trading in wine first documented here in 1211. The core of the estate, with its romantic location in the Rheingau wineries near the Rhine river, is a tower house built as a castle surrounded by a pond so that it can only be accessed over a bridge. The estate dates back to the first third of the 14th century and the von Greiffenclau family. The von Greiffenclaus added today‘s two-wing manor house and later the servicebuildings in the 17th century. In the 19th century, the famous German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 – 1832) enjoyed a drop of good Rheingau Riesling. The estate was in the family‘s hands until the death of Count Matuschka-Greiffenclau in 1997. Today the cultural monument and winery is owned by a bank.
Despite its long tradition, Schloss Vollrads is above all a modern winery which was also designated a separate municipal district in 1971, which means that the wine from here can be labelled »Schloss Vollrads« without any additional village name. The winery`s 63 hectares are devoted exclusively to Riesling grapes, from which the complete bandwidth of wines is produced, from Qualitätswein through Kabinett, Spätlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese and Trockenbeerenauslese to Eiswein. The winery is considered one of the best wine estates in Germany and has received numerous national and international awards in recent years.
100% Riesling – pure and authentic
The philosophy at Schloss Vollrads, according to its winemaker Dr. Rowald Hepp, is to concentrate deliberately and exclusively on Riesling, the most sophisticated and elegant white grape variety. By growing 100% Riesling, the winery can best combine the traditions and skills it has developed with the ideal climate and soil conditions in order to prepare itself for the future, because elegant, complex Rieslings with a moderate alcohol content, such as those produced in Schloss Vollrads, are finding more and more enthusiasts nowadays. In addition to elegance and complexity, the mineral note which the wine receives from the loess-loam, gravel, slate and quartzite soils, is typical of Vollrads Riesling. The declared goal at Schloss Vollrads is to find the right balance between fruitiness and a mineral note from the soil, and between fresh fruit acid and extract – and all of this with a moderate alcohol content.
Quality begins in the vineyard, where great value is placed on traditional work methods. Accordingly, around 90% of the harvest at Schloss Vollrads is done by hand. During the harvest, the grapes are picked from each vine in several phases to ensure that they have reached their optimum ripeness. Short distances between the vineyard and cellar allow the quick processing of the grapes while still fresh. The wine cellar uses state-of-the-art technology to ensure that the quality from the vineyard reaches the bottle unadulterated. Since 2003, glass caps have been used in the main to seal the wine instead of traditional corks. This innovative sealing system protects the cork oak forests and avoids complaints about the taste of cork in the wine. All of these measures contribute towards ensuring that a pure and world-class Riesling is produced at Schloss Vollrads.