One of the new guard of Mosel producers, Daniel Vollenweider crafts his superb Riesling from 12.4 acres of vines mostly on extremely steep slopes with high percentage of old and ungrafted Riesling vines.
in 1999, swiss born Vollenweider devoted himself to a dream: to run his own estate and grow riesling wines that are crystal-clear, no-nonsense, yet sensual and lush all at once.
After working in vineyards both in Germany and abroad, Daniel started with 1.3 hectares in the Wolfer Goldgrube: an ideal vineyard in the sense that it boasts a fine pedigree, yet had fallen out of use (and the spotlight) in recent decades. He now owns just over four hectares on Goldgrube as well as parcels in Kröver Steffensberg and Trabener Würzgarten (Schimbock), and is a member of der klitzekleine ring, a group of winemakers that revive derelict, steep old-vine vineyard sites in the Mosel.
Daniel is dedicated to the uniquely grueling lifestyle of winemakers in the Mosel who choose to responsibly farm these harrowing sites by hand and without using pesticides and herbicides, knowing the hard work is beneficial to both the vines and ultimately the wine.
The Goldgrube is a steep amphitheater rising above a bend in the Mosel river, south to southwest-facing, with predominately Devonian gray slate (certain parcels variegated with iron-rich red slate). Old vines here are ungrafted and some are over 80 years in age. The estate is 100% Riesling and 100% steep, slate sites. Everything must be done by hand in the vineyard.
The winemaking philosophy is as simple as it gets: work hard. Daniel works alone, with no short cuts and no compromises. Vinification happens in the multi-level cellar located under his house in Trarbach, a town (along with its sister-city Traben across the river) that was an invaluable wine shipping hub during the last half of the nineteenth century and into the early 1900s. Taking a minimalist approach, Daniel uses stainless steel tanks and prefers spontaneous fermentation for all wines except for those affected by Botrytis. In more recent vintages Daniel has expanded into making dry and dry-tasting wines, which are also outstanding and full of verve.