In the steepest vineyard in the Palatinate

by time news

UTo get to what is probably the steepest vineyard in the Palatinate, you just have to orientate yourself towards the Palatinate Forest. Anyone who approaches the northern tip of the low mountain range has almost reached the goal. Coming from the east, visitors traverse a beautiful landscape with rolling hills, on which many winemakers have distributed their vines for decades. Two of them are the brothers Johannes and Philipp Reibold, who a few years ago took over the winery of the same name from their father in Freinsheim and put it on the road to success.

Wherever wine is made, people like to drink it – at least in the Palatinate. That is why Marc Depper, a good friend of the Reibolds, bought the “Alte Kellerei” in Neuleiningen near Grünstadt together with his wife Franziska Willersinn and her family in July 2020 to use it as a wine café with a spacious garden, guest rooms and a vaulted cellar for special occasions and Celebrate. A steep, overgrown slope facing south also belongs to the property. At first glance, it cannot be seen from there, especially not from the guests, because they are sitting in the garden and drinking wine, especially enjoying the view.

Now it was clear what had to come if one friend actually bought a steep slope by chance and the other knew that wonderful wine could grow on it. So at the beginning of the year the Reibolds leased the piece of land with a gradient of 68 percent (34 degrees), which at the beginning of this year was still a wild, bushy and forgotten slope and is now being admired by more and more colleagues as an ambitious project. Only those who lean a little over the property’s boundary wall and look specifically downwards will discover the plants that grow up on steel poles. Plant lovers can tell from the leaves that it has to be wine, while professionals know from the shape of the leaves that it is Chardonnay.

Even the winemakers from the Moselle should pay tribute to the “Am Mühlberg” location here in Neuleiningen. Even if their vines, in contrast to those in the Palatinate, are almost always on an extreme slope. With the Bremmer Calmont, the Moselans even have the steepest location in Europe.





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They go steeply in the Palatinate

Before the friends could get to work outside to whip up the overgrown slope, they started to work up a sweat in their minds. Because in this country nobody is allowed to simply create a vineyard. In November 2020, the team went to the Rhineland-Palatinate Chamber of Agriculture in Neustadt to inquire whether the parcel existed in the viticulture register. The sobering answer came: No, it doesn’t. In Germany this means that the wine may only be sold in the lowest quality level “German wine”, if at all.

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