Since 2009, wine-growers have been successfully growing vines in Schleswig-Holstein’s vineyards – in spite of the salty air, strong winds and the all too familiar, foul weather.
When wine-growing is mentioned, do you think of the vineyards on the Mosel and Rhine, the small, cosy wine shop in Toscana or the many international wine labels stocked by the wine dealer of your trust? But did you know that grapes are also cultivated professionally in Schleswig-Holstein?
Yes, you heard right! It all began in 2009 when Rheinland-Palatinate transferred part of its unused cultivation rights, ten hectares of wine-growing area to be exact, to the northernmost federal state. There are precise regulations in the European Union governing where and how many vines can be cultivated. But that is by no means all. From a legal perspective, Schleswig-Holstein’s vineyards are not wine-growing areas but designated as table wine areas. Consequently, the wine produced may only be marketed as table wine and not as quality wine.
Nevertheless, the number of vines and the area in which table wine may be grown in the real North increases by one hectare every year with the result that now wine is produced on almost 30 hectares. By comparison: In other wine-growing areas in Germany, the areas concerned lie between 450 and around 26,000 hectares. This makes Schleswig-Holstein one of the smaller wine-growing areas.
The family run Ingenhof vineyard lies at the heart of Holstein Switzerland and it has been planting vines on Gröndalberg since 2009. Ingenhof also cultivates strawberries and other crops, and besides renting out holiday apartments, it offers guided tours of the farm and vineyard.
www.ingenhof.de/weingut (in German)
SJ Montigny vineyard
The winegrower Steffen James Montigny was one of the first to cultivate vines in the real North professionally in 2009. Today you can buy white wine and rosé under the label “So mookt wi dat” (That’s how we like it), made from grapes harvested from the vineyards of Holstein Switzerland.
In the Waalem wine estate in Nieblum on the North Sea island of Föhr, you will find a very special kind of wine-growing area. The tasty grapes from the Johanniter and Solaris vines thrive here wonderfully well in the fresh breeze of salty North Sea air and with the mud flat on the doorstep.
Balthasar Ress vineyard
The Balthasar Ress vineyard, located on the edge of the village of Keitum on the North Sea island of Sylt, is in the direct vicinity of the Wadden Sea. The climate with its many hours of sunshine (yes, you heard right) offers ideal conditions for the Solaris and Rivaner grapes.
www.balthasar-ress.de (in German)
The bio-certified vineyard is situated right beside the classical mansion on the Deutsch-Nienhof estate. The Solaris, Rondo and Cabernet Cortis grapes grow here. The red and white grapes make tasty wines under the name KROON 54° 15‘ which are sold directly on the Deutsch-Nienhof estate.
www.deutsch-nienhof.de (in German)
Germany’s northernmost vineyard was created in Keitum on the North Sea island of Sylt in 2009 with 2,700 vines. Initially only sufficient for the winegrowers’ own needs, today this Schleswig-Holstein table wine made from the white wine grape Solaris is offered for sale and for tasting. Incidentally: the area is run entirely along ecological lines.
www.klippo.de/sylterwein (in German)
The vineyard in the district of Stormann has been cultivating vines naturally in and busily processing grapes for the three types of white wine since 2017. The first wine from “Schatoh Feldmark” is set to come on the market in 2020.
www.schatoh-feldmark.de (in German)