Malles/Mals, Mals/Malles, Vinschgau/Val Venosta
Four-star ratings are rare for vineyards. But the Calvenschlössl Winegrowing Estate in Laudes in the community of Malles began with a vineyard at 1,000 meters and even went a step further in 2013. Or, to put it better, higher. In the monastery meadow of the Benedictine Abbey of Marienberg, Europe’s highest vineyard was planted. The German word for vineyard is Weinberg, meaning wine mountain, and that can completely be taken literally here.
In 2004, Hilde Van den dries acquired the Calvenschlössl castle. “Immediately afterward, the desire came upon us to make top-quality organic wine,” Van den dries says. But that is easier said than done, since the slopes around the house are not only steep, they also are situated at elevations between 970 and 1,005 meters above sea level.
In any case, the extreme locations have also turned out to be a stroke of luck. The southern exposure bestows upon the grapes ample sunshine, the elevation provides coolness, from which grapes with high sugar levels and prominent acidities result. In addition, in both vineyards the focus is not only on resistant grape varieties such as Solaris, Souvignier Gris, Zweigelt, and Cabernet Cortis, but also on careful dealings with nature and thus on a holistic method of agriculture.
And that also holds true in the winery. “The energy from the spontaneous fermentation from the natural yeast strains of the grapes lend our wines their unmistakable finesse and their unique character,” Van den dries is convinced. The elevation is therefore not the only special ingredient in the wine from the Calvenschlössl Wine Estate in Laudes.