THE NAHE VALLEY WINE-GROWING REGION

The wine-growing region of the Nahe covers an area of 4.221 ha, which represents approximately 4.3% of the total area under vine throughout Germany. Nevertheless it is unquestionably one of the most interesting regions due to the immense geological diversity of its soils. The vineyards extend from the southern flank of the Rhenish Slate Mountains down to the neighbouring valleys of Alsenz and Glan.
The Nahe River rises near Martinstein at approximately 480 meters above sea-level and having descended 400 meters in altitude along its course of 130 km, finally flows into the River Rhein near Bingen.
The Nahe region was subjected to frequent volcanic activity and earth tremors over a period of millions of years which resulted in its varied landscape and geological diversity. Strata of very different types of rock do not lie horizontally, but rise vertically adjacent to one another. This can be attributed to Variscan folding during the Carboniferous Period and the subsequent collapse of the Nahe Rift Valley. This also explains why in some areas completely different types of soil are to be found within a few hundred meters of one another.
For those who are interested in the geological history of the Nahe region, the Schlosspark Museum in Bad Kreuznach is home to a very good permanent exhibition. Since the mid-1980’s one can view beautiful fossils of water lilies, sea lilies and corals which have been petrified in Hunsrück slate. They all bear witness to former geological periods, during which seas and lakes were to be found in an area where now forests and vines thrive.
The composition of the soils in the wine-growing region of the Nahe is an ideal case-study in geology. Here one can find phyllite, green slate, quartzite slate, red coloured rhyolite, sandstone, clods of earth of carbonic origin, weathered volcanic rock, loess, sand emanating from former sea-beds, alluvial gravel and even semi-precious stones. This great diversity has resulted in the Nahe Valley being one of the most interesting locations for viticulture. Coupled with this, the Nahe’s micro-climate and the wine-growers’ sensibility result in wines of great individuality. The experts all agree: in comparison to top wines from other areas, the Nahe wines have a huge potential in terms of fruit, spice and volume.
In his own unconventional way, Dr. Martin Tesch endeavours to make Riesling wines which reflect this diversity of soils. The wines of his small collection do not differ in grape variety, quality or residual sugar content. All of his Rieslings are dry in style. The wines differ merely in character, which is largely determined by the terroir upon which the vines are cultivated.
The wine-growing region of the Nahe covers an area of 4.221 ha, which represents approximately 4.3% of the total area under vine throughout Germany. Nevertheless it is unquestionably one of the most interesting regions due to the immense geological diversity of its soils. The vineyards extend from the southern flank of the Rhenish Slate Mountains down to the neighbouring valleys of Alsenz and Glan.

The Nahe River rises near Martinstein at approximately 480 meters above sea-level and having descended 400 meters in altitude along its course of 130 km, finally flows into the River Rhein near Bingen.

The Nahe region was subjected to frequent volcanic activity and earth tremors over a period of millions of years which resulted in its varied landscape and geological diversity. Strata of very different types of rock do not lie horizontally, but rise vertically adjacent to one another. This can be attributed to Variscan folding during the Carboniferous Period and the subsequent collapse of the Nahe Rift Valley. This also explains why in some areas completely different types of soil are to be found within a few hundred meters of one another.

For those who are interested in the geological history of the Nahe region, the Schlosspark Museum in Bad Kreuznach is home to a very good permanent exhibition. Since the mid-1980’s one can view beautiful fossils of water lilies, sea lilies and corals which have been petrified in Hunsrück slate. They all bear witness to former geological periods, during which seas and lakes were to be found in an area where now forests and vines thrive.

The composition of the soils in the wine-growing region of the Nahe is an ideal case-study in geology. Here one can find phyllite, green slate, quartzite slate, red coloured rhyolite, sandstone, clods of earth of carbonic origin, weathered volcanic rock, loess, sand emanating from former sea-beds, alluvial gravel and even semi-precious stones. This great diversity has resulted in the Nahe Valley being one of the most interesting locations for viticulture. Coupled with this, the Nahe’s micro-climate and the wine-growers’ sensibility result in wines of great individuality. The experts all agree: in comparison to top wines from other areas, the Nahe wines have a huge potential in terms of fruit, spice and volume.

In his own unconventional way, Dr. Martin Tesch endeavours to make Riesling wines which reflect this diversity of soils. The wines of his small collection do not differ in grape variety, quality or residual sugar content. All of his Rieslings are dry in style. The wines differ merely in character, which is largely determined by the terroir upon which the vines are cultivated.