Grand Cru


Rodern & Saint-Hippolyte

The mont des clochettes (bell mount) wines are imbued with power and elegance. Perhaps an enchanted terroir and definitely an enchanting one since the medieval times up to now.

  • Soil type Granite
  • Surface area in hectares 23.4
  • Exposure South, South-East
  • Village Rodern & Saint-Hippolyte
  • Altitude 250 to 360 metres
  • Grape varieties (in % per variety)
    • Pinot Gris 61%
    • Gewurztraminer 35%
    • Riesling 4%
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Grand Cru Gloeckelberg

The wines

Gloeckelberg wines are generous, rich and complex.

The terroir-tie

The terroir link

The wines are ample with a fine and persistent acidity.

The nose is usually finely concentrated and honey-like. The dominant aromatic indicators are those of candied fruits, quince, fig and pineapple of course, associated with white flower hints (great mullein, acacia) and smoked nuances.

La bouche se caractérise par une attaque douce, de velours, et évolue vers une sensation saline sur la longue. The beautiful harmony between sugar and acidity produces remarkable wines.

Choose and serve

Keeping potential

The early-ripening of this terroir and all the work by wine-makers gives wines with consistent quality. The fresh vintage years (1987, 1996, 2001, 2008, 2010) are marked by their acidic vivacity, the great ripening vintage years (1988, 1989, 1990, 2000, 2005) develop a characteristic finesse. On the years with extreme water stress conditions like 2003, this terroir is very hard to manage.

Le Gloeckelberg donne des vins qui peuvent s'ouvrir jeunes cependant, leur garde est importante. So today, the 2004 and 2007 vintage years are close to their heyday.

Principal wine pairings

Gloeckelberg wines are particularly good with:

  • foie gras and candied figs
  • celery tartar with pear and Roquefort
  • lamb tajine
  • chicken mango casserole
  • Baeckaoffa with winter fruits
  • crème brulée
  • pear feuilleté, cinnamon sabayon sauce
  • red fruit crumble

Grand Cru Gloeckelberg

The terroir

The nature

This hard-to-farm sloped Grand Cru is distinguished by its hot climate and thus early-ripening grapes. Cocooned by the mountains, the granite terroir vine stocks produce fine wines with great ageing potential.


The Gloeckelberg Grand Cru is mostly located on the territory of Rodern, and for a small part in Saint Hippolyte. The sloped hillsides are facing south and south-east. If the upper part of this Grand Cru is characterised by steep slopes, they pan out in the lower part, creating a funnel effect which guarantees good air circulation.

Ce terroir se situe à l'Ouest de la faille vosgienne, à l'extrémité Nord du champ de fracture de Ribeauvillé. When the upper Rhine plain collapsed, the huge tectonic stress created reliefs and large fault offsets.


The parent rock is made of so-called porphyroblastic granite from Thannenkirch, recognisable by its large crystals of potassium feldspar blended with its other major components such as quartz and mica.

When granite is exposed to weather conditions, they alter and while breaking up, they shape into loose mantles called arena whose thickness can vary depending on topographical exposure. These granular, coarse sand soils create acid chemical reactions making the soil turn brown.

Sur le haut du lieu-dit des débris schisteux et gréseux se mêlent au granite. These soils have low useful water supply and can suffer from drought during warm years. At the bottom of the slope, the accumulation of colluvium provides better water supply, notably at the end of the summer.


Although the region of central Alsace is sheltered from the Vosges mountain range where its peaks are the highest (Brézouard, 1228m) it is one of the regions with the lowest rainfall in France. On the Gloeckelberg the rainfall is between 600 and 700 mm per year. Moreover, the south-east hillside exposure with a perfectly open horizon towards the east and steep slopes especially near the top of this moderately-high site, provide this Grand Cru with excellent heat conditions. In addition, the soil heats up easily during the spring, contributing to all the best conditions for early-maturity and great ripening of grapes.

Grape varieties

Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer represent over 95% of the wines produced in this Grand Cru.

These two grape varieties are particularly suited for this terroir: the early-ripening and the water stress stop the grapes growing and allow them to obtain perfect maturity.

Also, the topography and microclimate of this lieu-dit often cause raisining which makes the harvest even more concentrated.

The people

Apparently witches would gather on the Kleckelberg. Today, the magic belongs to wine-growers who strive to reflect the beauties and virtues of nature in their wines.

Heritage transmission

Regional archives reveal the prestige that important historic figures bestowed upon the Gloeckelberg wines long ago. As of 1338, the brothers Jean and Rudolphe de Reichenberg, Knights of the Order of Malta, owned land in the lieu-dit which later became the Gloeckelberg Grand Cru.

Some years later (around 1343), the Notre Dame charity and the Saint-Thomas church of Strasbourg shared, along with the Sainte-Catherine convent of Colmar, the cru ownership from which the Queen of Hungary received the proceeds of three and a half measures of wine.

In 1370, the locality of Rodern participated in the Sélestat leper-colony through continuous donations, protecting the Gloeckelberg wine-growing area.

At the end of the 19th century, these vineyards were also supplying the Marmoutier abbey with drink.

Beloved vineyards and land

Today, more than ever, a lot of care is given to this vineyard. The work is very arduous due to the steep slopes of this cru. Wine-makers are in charge of a vineyard with weak water supply and erosion-sensitive.

La densité de plantation préconisée est au minimum de 5 000 pieds par hectare afin de favoriser une meilleure colonisation du sol par les ceps. The ground work and cover participate in the same objective. To guarantee the best maturity possible, the harvest must be limited to the appellation-specific level.

Aux yeux des vignerons, la protection de l'environnement et de la biodiversité du Gloeckelberg est primordiale. The whole farming territory is thus protected against grape-cluster worms using mating disruption, and planting trees is highly encouraged.

Les vignerons du Grand Cru Gloeckelberg ont particulièrement à cœur la mise en relief de l'identité qualitative du site. If the yields are limited, chaptalisation forbidden and tree-planting density encouraged, it is to harvest grapes which best express this terroir.

To continue farming these hillsides with fairly-expensive production costs, the sole option is to strive forward using ambitious wine-making techniques to obtain unique wines.