Grand Cru



The sparkling energy of this great calcareous terroir perfectly reflects the citation of Galileo: «Wine is sunlight held together by water.»

  • Soil type Marl-limestone
  • Surface area in hectares 32,80
  • Exposure South-East
  • Village Beblenheim
  • Altitude between 220 and 270 metres
  • Grape varieties (in % per variety)
    • Pinot Gris 50%
    • Gewurztraminer 42%
    • Riesling 8%
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Grand Cru Sonnenglanz

The wines

The terroir-tie

Sonnenglanz unveils the sunny spirit of this terroir.

The palate has generous and flavourful mouthfeel revealing the great maturity obtained here. It’s expressed by exotic hints of pineapple, mango and passion fruit.

Each grape variety brings its own aromatic touch, but nonetheless preserving precise ripeness characteristics through overripe or candied grapes. The wine silhouette keeps its balance thanks to its fresh acidity, very perceptible in the middle mouth.

Romain Ilitis
Best Sommelier of France, 2012 and Meilleur Ouvrier de France, 2015 (in the Sommelier category)

Choose and serve

Vintage years

These wines are open on the fruit and tender structure, giving immediate pleasure. However, when kept for five to six years, their matter is refined, making it more complex.

During early-ripening vintage years: the very-ripe fruit and honey are mesmerising along with a generous wine structure. Their aromatic intensity made crus with character and a perfectly integrated delicious sweetness.

During late-ripening vintage years: the fruit touch is always there along with a lighter body with more tautness, but dense.

Romain Ilitis
Best Sommelier of France, 2012 and Meilleur Ouvrier de France, 2015 (in the Sommelier category)

Wine and food pairing

The freshness and balance of Sonnenglanz wines are suitable for numerous culinary inventions. Their weight and generosity allows Eastern or Indian cuisine to fully express their flavours. Their spicy notes of saffron, coriander or cloves, often typical of these dishes, goes perfectly with the natural full-bodied characteristic of these wines.

This Grand Cru also beautifully accompanies beautiful exotic fruit desserts.

Romain Ilitis
Best Sommelier of France, 2012 and Meilleur Ouvrier de France, 2015 (in the Sommelier category)


Grand Cru Sonnenglanz

The terroir

The nature

Its name Sonnenglanz, literally sunlight in Alsatian, is beautifully interpreted by this terroir. Here the sun softly caresses the grapes. Their ripeness quality and rhythm owe everything to the combination of soil resources and precious daylight.


Located on the Beblenheim municipality territory, Sonnenglanz is part of the Ribeauvillé fault mosaic. Its vines face south-east, between 220 and 270 metres in altitude on a gentle slope from 10 to 25%.


It's a brown, well-structured and deep calcareous soil issued from Oligocene-epoch conglomerates full of limestone pebbles. With 30% of clay, it retains the heat during the spring, resulting in slow growing but does, however, guarantee great water retention and fertilising components. The slope is also enough to provide good drainage from rainwater, avoiding hydromorphy.


This highly-sunny terroir is not affected by shadows from the Vosges mountain range but benefits from its protection. Here rainfall is particularly low with an average of 600 mm per year and morning mists are extremely rare. The dominating south-west winds sweep across the gentle Sonnenglanz hillsides.

These elements make this an early-ripening and rather dry terroir, favourable to good ripening of grapes, often associated with the development of botrytis and grey mould.

Grape varieties

This type of soil is particularly suited to Pinot Gris and Gewurztraminer. The dry and warm climate allows for healthy harvests until late in the season. The development of noble rot during the good years is the opportunity to produce some wonderful Vendanges Tardives. Some Riesling parcels complete this varietal.

The people

The search for quality is part of the ancestral wine-growing heritage of Beblenheim wine-makers. As of the 16th century, growing vineyards was regulated. Sonnenglanz was even one of the first terroirs to benefit from legally-recognised boundaries, at the request of producers.

The presence of vineyards on the territory of Beblenheim dates back to the Middle Ages. The Benedictine monastery of Marmoutier and the Cistercian abbey of Pairis in the Vosges, owned some vines.

Depuis toujours les vignerons de Beblenheim ont été habitués à produire des vins de qualité, explique Marcel Kraemer, ancien directeur d'école et gardien de la mémoire collective du village. As of the 16th century, rulings stipulated the sort of plants to farm. Rural police were responsible for monitoring and grubbing up any non-compliant ones. Repeat offenders were hit with very heavy fines.

The small municipality has remained faithful to this rigorous spirit imposed for over four centuries by its former masters, the Dukes of Wurtemberg.

>In 1935, at the request of the wine-making syndicate of Beblenheim, the Colmar district court condemned a wine-grower for having sold wine under the name of Sonnenglanz which came from another lieu-dit. The court also delimited the production area and set the varietal conditions, thus recognising the specificities of this terroir and all this nearly 50 years before it got the appellation Alsace Grand Cru in 1983!

C’est aussi ici que naquit Christian Oberlin. His work and experiments with grafting on American vine stocks saved the Alsace wine-growing area from total destruction due to phylloxera.