Hansjörg and Birgit Rebholz, the third generation of the Rebholz family continue what the founder, the Ökonomierat Eduard Rebholz began: producing highly individualistic wines by working as close as possible with nature. The Rebholz wines are crystal clear, sharp, clean, simply beautiful in their transparency and underscore the individuality of the terroir, the climate, and the grape.
Hansjörg Rebholz welcomed us. The tasting took place in the modern tasting room of the winery and was conducted by Janina Wilsch, who studied International Wine Business in Geisenheim and Gießen.
Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz
Hansjörg and Birgit Rebholz, the third generation of the Rebholz family, continue what the founder, the Ökonomierat Eduard Rebholz began: producing highly individualistic wines by working as close as possible with nature.
Hansjörg Rebholz was Winemaker of the Year 2013 (Falstaff) and Winemaker of the Year 2002 (Gault Millau). Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz has the top 5 out of 5 grapes rating in the Gault Millau (with 10 other winemakers). Also, Hansjörg Rebholz is one of the movers and shakers in the Grosses Gewächs movement in Germany.
Ökonomierat Eduard Rebholz
Eduard Rebholz (1889 – 1966), an Oekonomierat (Economic Counsellor), became well-known as an advocate of the natural wine school of thought. Eduard took great exception to the then contemporary taste in wine and countered the unnatural, artificially sweetened blends with his idea of natural wine. His doctrine that good vinification could do without chaptalization, without “Süßreserve” (the adding of sweet/unfermented grape juice), or structural changes to the wine due to cellar techniques, influenced the work of the succeeding generations.
A trained scientist he researched climate, soils in the vineyards and the appropriate varietals, harvesting periods redefined, methods of vinification replaced by its own strict rules. He even included in his research practical experience of winegrowers in other regions. All of this forms the foundation of the Rebholz style.
There are three distinct terroirs in the estate’s vineyards. In the Süd-Pfalz, where the estate is located, limestone terroir rules and it is ubiquitously present in one part of the Im Sonnenschein (or in the sunshine) vineyard where Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and to lesser amounts Pinot Gris and estate specialties Gewürztraminer and Muskateller are planted.
In the Ganzhorn, a small parcel of the same site the estates Riesling excels. It performs the minor miracle of exquisite peach, apple and apricot aromas sourced from the deluvial shingle of the Queich Brook.
Rebholz’ oldest vineyard, the Albertsweiler Latt, in Albersweil was planted to Gewurztraminer in 1947. The vines are trellised on pergolas because at the time, Hansjorg’s grandfather believed the region had a similar climate to Tuscany.
Last but not least there is the Kastanienbusch (or chestnut bush), one of the steepest and highest slopes in the Pfalz at 300 meters, on red slate soil that is unusual in the region. This iron-rich, well-draining soil produce wines of great concentration. It simply produces some of the greatest dry Rieslings not only in Germany – but anywhere.
The estate’s 22 ha are farmed bio-dynamically with a production of about 10,000 cases.
Hansjörg Rebholz: For more than 50 years, we've been making wines containing only what nature intended for them. We do not chaptalize our wines (the addition of sugar prior to fermentation in order to increase the alcohol content), nor do we use a 'Süßreserve' (unfermented grape must added to the finished wine prior to bottling).
We are proud that despite these strict and self-imposed restrictions, our name has regularly come out on top of numerous and international tastings and competitions. This continued success serves as a constant reminder for us that while we may not have chosen the easy path, for us it is indeed the right one.
Working as close to nature as possible — nothing more, nothing less. This is what we believe makes a natural wine. It is our mantra, our philosophy and our goal in the vineyard. In practice, our long established principles and methods align closely with sustainable winegrowing.
For starters, we've been following organic guidelines in our vineyards since 2005. In an effort to promote a healthy ecosystem and to protect the environment, we also forgo the use of herbicides, synthetic fungicides and mineral fertilizers. We use only organic techniques and materials that promote healthy plants, helping the vines grow strong and prosper naturally. While these methods involve more time and effort, it is a price we willingly accept in order to best protect and preserve the biodiversity within our vineyard.
We believe that this work directly impacts the quality of our wines. Each terroir is defined by its own distinct native flora and fauna, the living organisms in the soil, the natural topsoil and a certain capacity on the part of the vines and their roots to tap into and work with these elements. By nurturing a more natural ecosystem in the soil, we help the vines better express the distinct character of their terroir in their fruit, and thus ultimately in our wines. And that's exactly what we're after.
Even so, fine wine is only one reason why we pursue sustainability. We see it as our social responsibility to preserve nature, first and foremost our vineyards but also the larger world around us. We never allow ourselves to forget that we are mere stewards for the generations to come.
Our wines conform to the published standards of the EU Eco Regulation and have earned EU organic certification. All of our wines bear the Öko-Kontroll number DE-ÖKO-003.
The Wines we Tasted
2007 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz PiNo Gold Sekt
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Riesling trocken
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Birkweiler Riesling trocken
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Riesling trocken vom Bundsandstein
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Riesling trocken vom Muschelkalk
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Ganzhorn im Sonnenschein Riesling GG
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Im Sonnenschein Riesling GG
2011 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Ganzhorn im Sonnenschein Riesling GG
2012 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Im Sonnenschein Riesling GG
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Mandelberg Weisser Burgunder GG
2014 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Chardonnay
2012 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Spätburgunder Tradition trocken
2012 Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz Spätburgunder vom Muschelkalk trocken
Postings on the Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015) (Posted and Forthcoming)
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Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
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Cellar Tour and Tasting at Weingut Salwey in Oberrotweil, Kaiserstuhl, Baden, with Benno Salwey – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
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Wine Paring Lunch at Restaurant Schwarzer Adler (1 Star Michelin) in Oberbergen, Kaiserstuhl, Baden – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
Tasting at Weingut Bernhard Huber in Baden, with Yquem Viehauser and Julian Huber – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
Cellar Tour and Tasting at Weingut Dr. Heger in Ihringen, Kaiserstuhl, Baden – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
Tour and Tasting at Maison Léon Beyer in Eguisheim, Alsace, France, with Marc Beyer – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), France
At Domaine Weinbach in Kaysersberg, Alsace, with Catherine Faller: Tasting and Tour – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015), France
Wine Lunch at Weingut Jülg with Johannes Jülg – Germany-South Tour by ombiasy WineTours (2015)
Tasting at Weingut Ökonomierat Rebholz (VDP) in Siebeldingen, Pfalz
Schiller's Favorite (Wine-) Restaurants in Deidesheim in the Pfalz, Germany
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Tour and Tasting at Weingut A. Christmann (VDP) in Gimmeldingen, Pfalz, with Steffen Christmann
Tour and Tasting at Weingut von Winning (VDP) in Deidesheim, Pfalz
Tour and Tsting at Weingut Josef Biffar in Deidesheim, with Owner and Winemaker Fumiko Tokuoka
Wine Pairing Dinner at Restaurant FUMI at Weingut Josef Biffar in Deidesheim, with Owner and Winemaker Fumiko Tokuoka
Tour and Tasting at Weingut Markus Schneider in Ellerstadt, Pfalz, with Markus Schneider
Tour and Tasting at Weingut Koehler-Ruprecht in Kallstadt, Pfalz, with Franziska Schmitt
Tasting at Weingut Dreissigacker in Bechtheim, Rheinhessen, with Ute Dreissigacker
Tour and Wine Pairing Lunch at Weingut Eva Vollmer in Mainz-Ebersheim, Rheinhessen, with Eva Vollmer
Announcement: 5 Exciting ombiasy WineTours in 2016 - BURGUNDY BORDEAUX GERMANY