Wednesday, January 2, 2013

With Karin Freimuth at Weingut Alexander Freimuth in Geisenheim, Germany – a Profile

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Karin Freimuth at Weingut Alexander Freimuth, Rheingau, Germany

I know the wines of Weingut Alexander Freimuth, Geisenheim in the Rheingau, quite well and appreciate them: Alexander Freimuth is with his booth a regular at the Rheingau Wine Festival that takes place for about 10 days in the center of Frankfurt in the autumn every year.

But I really fell in love with his wines, when I spent an afternoon at his “Strausswirtschaft” at Weingut Alexander Freimuth in Geisenheim. Strausswirtschaft came into being in 812 with a decree of Karl the Great. This permitted the winegrowers to serve their wine in their own private households. The tradition has continued to this day with wine sometimes being served in the winegrowers’ living rooms, sometimes in rebuilt stables or side rooms.

Pictures: Weingut Alexander Freimuth

At Weingut Alexander Freimuth, the wine and the food are either served in a new modern building with large glass windows from almost floor to bottom or, weather permitting, outside on the terrace - it is just gorgeous, right in the middle of the vineyards, with a breathtaking view of the Rhein Valley.

Weingut Alexander Freimuth

Weingut Alexander Freimuth is in Geisenheim, close to Rhuedesheim, in the western part of the Rheingau. It is a small winery with 8.5 hectares under vine.

Picture: Karin and Alexander Freimuth

Since 1989, Weingut Alexander Freimuth has been run and owned by Karin und Alexander Freimuth. Their son – after graduating with a Bachelor in Engineering - is currently studying at the winemaking college in Geisenheim and slated to take over. He is already helping.

Weingut Alexander Freimut is a member of the VDP, the association of the about 200 German elite winemakers. Unlike most of his fellow VDP members, Alexander is a very low key producer of premium wine.  I have never seen him at any of the VDP-sponsored tastings. Nor does he export. He sells mainly in the region, at the winery, at the wine festivals in Wiesbaden and Frankfurt as well as at the Strausswirtschaft, which is gorgeous, in the middle of the vineyard.

Picture: Christian G.E. Schiller and Karin Freimuth at Weingut Alexander Freimuth, Rheingau, Germany

Winemaking in the Freimuth Family started after the Second World War with a quarter of an hectare of vineyard land. Initially, Josef Freimuth traded the wine he made against food in the northern part of Germany. Over the years, the vineyard size and production grew. The vineyard size totaled 4 hectares, when Alexander Freimuth took over the winery in 1989, while he was still studying at the Geisenheim Wine Colleague. There, he met his wife Karin.

The following years were marked by a transfer of the winery from the center of Geisenheim to the Marienthal part of Geisenheim. Over the years, a production facility was constructed and a new home for the Freimuths; this was followed by the construction of another building, including a terrace for the Strausswirtschaft and 2 apartments that can be rented for “vacation in a winery”.

The vineyard area grew to the current 8,5 hectares: Kilzberg, Kläuserweg, Mäuerchen and Mönchspfad  in Geisenheim and Bischofsberg, Kirchenpfad and Magdalenenkreuz in Rüdesheim are the vineyards where the Freimuths own plots.

Picture: Wines of Weingut Alexander Freimuth

They are mainly with the two varieties Riesling (65%) and Pinot Noir (25%), with the rest of Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc planted.

Weingut Alexander Freimuth
Am Rosengärtchen 25, 65366 Geisenheim

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