The –Romantic Roadâ? and the –Skywalkâ? run along the Saale-Unstrut Wine Route. Castles and palaces such as the Neuenburg and the Rudelsburg, important
buildings like Naumburg Cathedral and mystical sites such as the place where the Sky Disk of Nebra was found tell of the cultural history of the country. Freyburg on the Unstrut is con- sidered the secret wine capital of the area. Every year on the second weekend in September, the largest wine festival of the
region is held here. Exploring this wine-growing region and its wines, vineyards, wine taverns and seasonal vintners wine bars is a lot of fun as there is a well-developed network of cycle paths, walking tracks and waterways. The
largest part of the region is located in the Saale-Unstrut-Triasland conservation
More information about the German wine region of Saale-Unstrut at:
Sommeliers, wine connois- seurs, and people liv- ing in the growing areas
know that there is an appropriate glass for every type of wine. In WuÌ?rttemberg, this is a very strange receptacle: a glass mug. The only wine glass without
a stem has a convenient handle on its side and is mostly used in the traditional wine taverns. In gen-
eral, the inhabitants of WuÌ?rttemberg drink more wine than the people in all the other regions
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One of the first wine- growers– cooperatives in the world and the
first one in Germany was founded in Mayschoß in 1868. And this is why it happened: bad harvests and oppressive duties meant that many winemak- ing families could no longer subsist on their work
in the winery. Some emigrated, others joined to- gether to collectively operate a wine cellar. An
idea that works to this day – not only in the Ahr region!
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Among the excellent white wines from Baden is the –Klingelber- gerâ?. This is simply a
Riesling known by that name in the Ortenau. The name stems from the Klingelberg vineyard, part of the Schlossberg at Durbach where Margrave Carl Friedrich of Baden, master of the Staufenberg Castle
winery, had Riesling planted in 1782. The fact that this vineyard was first planted with only
a single variety, was an innovation at that time.
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One of the most famous Franken vineyards and the oldest documented vineyard site by name in
Germany is the –WuÌ?rzburg Steinâ?. Steinwein has long been a synonym for Franken wine. A 1540s Steinwein is today still stored in the cellar of the BuÌ?rgerspital winery in WuÌ?rzburg. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the German
national poet, was a pronounced connoisseur of Steinwein. On 17 June 1806 he wrote to his wife
Christiane: –Please send me some WuÌ?rzburg wine, no other wine tastes as nice, and I
am in a surly mood if I lack my usual favourite drink.â?
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The Oden- wald forest has an –islandâ?, namely the Odenwald wine island. This is of course not a real island,
but a small wine-growing region slightly separated from the rest of the Hessische Bergstraße around the
town of Groß-Umstadt to the west of Darmstadt. Wine is cultivated here on a mere 62 hectares not far from the Hessian metropolis Frankfurt am Main which also has a vineyard, the Lohberg. However, this is firstly part of the Rheingau region, and secondly the Frank-
furt people explicitly prefer a different kind of wine – that made from apples – called
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The town of Bacharach has several distinctive steep slopes. According to
an old saying the best wines are grown in Bacharach, and Pope Pius II had a barrel of Bacharach wine delivered to Rome every year. But there is also a very flat vineyard. It is situa- ted on a 680 by 150 metre island in the Rhine and is called
–Heyles–en Werthâ? after its former owner Hans Heyles. Today the island is cultivated by a winemaking family from
Bacharach. They do not only need strong legs like the steep slope vintners but also muscular arms as the
island can only by reached by rowing boat.
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The most ex- pensive sale of a vineyard to date took place in 1900 when the mayor of Bernkastel sold
4,300 square metres of the vineyard named –Doc- torâ? to a certain Carl Wegeler – for 100 gold marks per vine. In today–s money that would be about 600 to 700 Euro per vine. The investment was worthwhile, however,
as the vineyard is now one of the most famous in the world and best in the region. Its peculiar name derives
from the fact that in 1630 the Archbishop Bohe- mund of Trier was ill but surprisingly recovered
after a few sips of wine and thus awarded the title of Doctor to the vineyard.
More information about the German wine region of Mosel at:
The Nahe also has a
wine route – like almost every region. But the Nahe vintners are working to-
gether with the German Gemstone Route, after all, the German gemstone stronghold Idar-Oberstein is not far away. Every year a special wine edition in a special
decorative bottle is put on the market. It is called –Edelschliffâ? (noble cut). Every bottle is furnished
with a precious stone – in 2010, it was an epi- dote, and inside the bottle is a liquid gem:
a selected wine from the Nahe!
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The Deutsche Weinstraße goes through many typical wine villages with timber-
framed houses where vines are growing across the road. Once a year, on the last Sunday in August, on an event-filled day the entire German Wine Road is re- served for pedestrians and cyclists: an 80 kilometre long wine festival with more than 300,000 cyclists,
walkers and skaters!
More information about the German wine region of Pfalz at: