Thursday, June 30, 2011
Germany - Day 8 Part II - Johann Tullius Family Winery
After leaving Rudesheim, we took the ferry across the Rhine and drove about 25 miles to Steinhardt where the Johann Tullius Weingut is located. This family owned and operated winery has been in business since 1690 and the 9th and 10th generation family have adapted the business to thrive in today's world. In addition to the wine operations, they also have a Bed & Breakfast and sizable convention/party facilities. As we arrived, they were preparing for a wedding party of over 100 people the next day.
The family name, Tullius, goes all the way back to the days when the Romans occupied this part of Germany. In case you didn't do the math, the winery is 321 years old and was around 86 years before our Declaration of Independence. The photos below are of the courtyard area.
Wine is ready for loading on the truck.
One of a number of rooms available for events.
Lars and Georg relaxing with a little......wine.
Opa (Grandpa) Tullius (9th generation) greeted us, took us on a tour of the wine making plant, and hosted our private wine tasting before going to dinner. He has retired but still enjoys meeting the guests and talking about wine.
They have shifted from using natural cork to seal the bottles to a synthetic cork that doesn't impart a taste to the wine and protects the wine from spoilage longer (more air and moisture tight). I believe that pretty much all wine makers are doing the same if not opting for screw off caps.
A grape press. Notice the electric motor and jack screw on the left end. The sides of the press are perforated to let the juice out. This assembly was inserted in a tank when in use. Being electric, it obviously wasn't ancient but still interesting.
The Tomb Room for small groups without claustrophobia.
Getting ready for wine tasting.
We had a great time and Opa Tullius never ran out of stories or wines.
On fairly empty stomachs, the wine eventually started taking its toll. At one time I though there were two Opa Tullius'.
After the tasting, we had a nice dinner and settled in for the night. The rooms were very comfortable and clean. After breakfast the next morning, Sigrid made friends with one of the locals dressed for the wedding party later that day.