30% Spätburgunder, 20% Pinot Blanc, 15% Riesling, 10% Grauburgunder sowie u.a. Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Auxerrois, Sauvignon blanc
Kalkverwitterungsböden, Kalkmergel, Tonmergel, Sandboden
VDP: What is so special about your winery?
Gerd Bernhart: Our beautiful wine village Schweigen lies directly on the border of Alsace and thus to France. As you know, the history here was quite varied, sometimes Alsace was French, sometimes German. It has thus come to the unusual circumstance that about two thirds of our vineyards are located in France. By a special regulation, these vineyards are subject to the German wine law and can therefore nevertheless be called wine from Pfalz.
VDP: What is your winery philosophy?
Gerd Bernhart: We want to produce high-quality wines in full harmony with nature. So, it is only logical that we cultivate our vineyards organically. The future of our children and their children is simply close to our hearts. We also want to preserve nature as far as possible, because it is a vital resource for us. And of course, the soil is our most valuable capital.
VDP: For what wine style do you strive?
Gerd Bernhart: Our wines are all dry and exhibit well defined character of origin and vineyard site, which is particularly important to us. Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) and Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) play a special role in this.
VDP: Welchen Ihrer Weine würden Sie jemandem empfehlen, der Ihr Weingut noch nicht kennt – sozusagen als Einstieg?
Gerd Bernhart: Um unser Weingut und unsere Weine kennen- und verstehenzulernen ist ein Schluck Schweigen Weißburgunder Kalkmergel VDP.ORTSWEIN wichtig. Warum? Dieser Wein hat bereits einen deutlichen Terroirbezug und er ist ein idealer Einstieg in die Klassifikationspyramide.
VDP: Which of your wines would you recommend to someone who does not yet know your winery – as an introduction, so to speak?
Gerd Bernhart: To get to know and understand our winery and our wines, a sip of Schweigen Weissburgunder Kalkmergel VDP.ORTSWEIN is vital. Why? This wine already offers clear expression of terroir and is an ideal entry into the classification pyramid.
VDP: Of which wine are you particularly proud?
Gerd Bernhart: Since the end of the 1980s we have occupied ourselves intensely with the subject of Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) red wine. We are constantly evolving and today have a wide range of Spätburgunder from VDP.ERSTE LAGE and VDP.GROSSE LAGE® VINEYARDS. Our VDP.GROSSES GEWÄCHS® RÄDLING Spätburgunder GG is the peak of our pyramid.
VDP: Why did you become a vintner?
Gerd Bernhart: Even as a young boy, I loved to play outdoors and I still have that in me. That’s probably why I enjoy working in the vineyard with and in nature so much today. I also love the versatility of my profession. No two days are the same.
VDP: Who was your role model?
Gerd Bernhart: My late father Willi had a special eye for the value and beauty of nature. That was the driving force for me to learn the profession of a winegrower, despite the difficult economic times at that time. He motivated me to go new ways, with all consequences. This development lasted almost ten years, but what we created in the process proved us right.
VDP: What are your next goals?
Gerd Bernhart: A good year ago, our son Marius announced that he also wanted to become a winemaker. As you can imagine, this brought our entire family joy. It is a matter of the heart to pass on one’s own calling and love for nature to your child. Children, happy children, give you enormous strength in everything you do.