Free from all expectations, we were able to develop our own style without any worries. Our wines are a clear commitment to the expression of the grape variety, the vintage and the soil on which the vines have grown. We want to reflect this with our wines - Nicht mehr aber auch nicht weniger.
The Gambacher Kalbenstein is our „home site“, where we farm 3.5ha of terraced vineyards. Gambach is a good 30 kilometers downstream from Würzburg, which in this case means northwest. The Gambacher Kalbenstein is the last vineyard on this stretch before the River Main winds its way through the low mountain range of Spessart. Gambach itself doesn’t lie on the Main, but on the backside of the Kalbenstein. To get to our vineyards, we always have to cross the wooded area that crowns the top of the Kalbenstein. In return, there is a spectacular view over the Main valley. So it's no wonder that we named our highest plot up here „Himmelslücke“ (= literally „gap in the sky“).
Down from the Main valley, one can see nicely how the Kalbenstein is formed. In the lower area the subsoil is reddish, the vineyard walls and stairs are made of Buntsandstein (red sandstone). Further up, the ground becomes brighter and brighter, we enter the area of Muschelkalk (shell limestone). Almost the entire slope is terraced, divided by stairs and walls into tiny plots. Whoever happens to be standing here immediately suspects that pure manual labor is required in the Kalbenstein. It takes idealism to grow grapes under these conditions with almost no mechanical help. For us, however, it is exactly what we imagine by the harmony between nature and culture. Moreover, the terroir of the Kalbenstein is capable of producing great wines.
The terraces of the Kalbenstein are designated as a nature reserve because the stony southern slope has preserved flora and fauna typical of dry grassland areas. There are not only more than 20 different species of orchids to discover, but also an impressive cultural landscape. This landscape is characterized by a diverse alternation of vineyards, dry grassland areas and numerous retreats for animals, such as hedges and dry stone walls. It implies a special responsibility to work with our vines in this site.
Castell is an old village on the edge of the Steigerwald, almost an hour's drive southeast of our winery. It is documented that Silvaner was planted in Castell for the first time in Franconia in 1659. We own a single parcel of land in the Casteller Kirchberg, situated high above the village directly on the edge of the forest. Of course, it is also planted with Silvaner vines.
The Casteller Kirchberg has a very special meaning for us, because this was the first plot we acquired. The distance from our winery sometimes makes cultivation a bit laborious. But the old vines planted in 1958 are simply unique – and so is their wine.
The Casteller Kirchberg is a pure Keuper site with Schilfsandstein in the subsoil. By nature, gypsum keuper has a much higher sulfate content than, for example, shell limestone or red sandstone. The village of Castell even had a rural spa, where people from the surrounding area used sulfurous thermal water to cure themselves. This different composition of the subsoil is also reflected in the wines, which are very complex and open up properly only after a few years.
Wasserlos is located between Aschaffenburg and Hanau, almost at the gates of Frankfurt. Even from us in Gambach, it's a 75-minute drive across the Spessart to the west. Although Wasserlos administratively still belongs to the wine-growing region of Franconia, the people there speak a different dialect, and the bedrock has changed as well. In Wasserlos, one is no longer in the area of the Franconian Trias [Link], but the subsoil consists of Urgestein like in the Rheingau.
This fascinating difference was the main reason why we purchased a plot there as our latest acquisition. Although Urgestein is now considered an outdated term in geology, in the viticultural sense it refers to deep rocks (such as granite) and metamorphites (such as gneiss). Both consist of the minerals feldspar, quartz and mica, and thus do not possess any formerly animal components like Muschelkalk or Keuper. This extremely high mineral content, with its saltiness, can also be felt in the wines.
Our plot in the Wasserloser Schlossberg, however, does not contain pure rock, but is covered by windblown sand and loess. For us, who are otherwise at home on steep terraces, the Wasserloser Schlossberg is comparatively profound and easy to cultivate, quasi holiday.
You can buy our wines at our farm or through one of our selected wine merchants.