Berncasteler Doctor

  • Berncasteler Doctor im Winter

It is documented that the English King Edward VII, the son of queen Victoria, who reigned from 1901 – 1910, drank the Berncasteler Doctor as “medicine”.

The Berncasteler Doctor vineyard borders directly on the town of Bernkastel. With its south-south-west exposure and a steepness between 60 and 70 percent, it provides ideal conditions for all-day sunshine. The high climate values in the “Doctor” can also be seen in winter when, compared to the neighboring sites, the snow regularly melt first (see picture).

The predominantly ungrafted vines are on average more than 60 years old. The soil consists of grey slate and delivers Riesling wines that are delicate, full bodied, spicy and minerally in character.

The vineyard has gained world renown primarily through of the quality of the wines grown there.

The nimbus of the healing effect of wine was given to it by the Doctor legend:

Thereafter, the Trier archbishop Boemund II of Trier, who ruled in the second half of the 14th century, was cured of a serious illness by drinking the wine during a stay at Landshut Castle and he called the wine the “Real Doctor”.

In 1882, Dr. Hugo Thanisch bought a parcel of 6000 m² of the Berncasteler Doctor for 17 gold marks per vine. Only 18 years later, in the year 1900, another parcel of the Berncasteler Doctor vineyard was sold for 100 gold marks per m²!

“Berncasteler Doctor” had not only cult status but carried enormous prestige and was a profitable investment.

The increasing demand was proved by results of wine auctions in Trier:

Between 1893 and 1908 a total of 159 barrels were auctioned for an average amount of sensational 4275 gold marks!
In second place was a winery from the Saar with an average amount of 3688 per barrel.

With 3.21 hectares the “Doctor” is one of the smallest vineyards in the region compared with other vineyards like Wehlener Sonnenuhr (46 ha), Graacher Himmelreich (86 ha) and Scharzhofberg (23 ha).