Domaine Weinbach: Highest Praise

Posted on Mar 22, 2023

Alsace wine route winery

Domaine Weinbach

At the base of the imposing Schlossberg (Castle) Hill within the golden heart of Alsace, Domaine Weinbach is a winery named after a small river running through its property that has built a reputation as vast as the ocean for consistently producing some of the very best wines in the region.

Originally a monastery, Domaine Weinbach was built more than 400 years ago by  Capuchin monks who made wine there for a couple of hundred years before being evicted during the French Revolution.

Alsace wine route winery

Weinbach estate vines.

Back then the estate was known as ‘Clos de Capuchins’ (a clos refers to vineyard enclosed by a wall), and the monks were making wine with the same grape varieties that the winery still works with today: Riesling, Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, and Pinot Noir.

After the monks were evicted and the property was confiscated and auctioned off by the state, it changed hands a couple of times before eventually being purchased by brothers Theodore and Jean-Baptiste Faller in 1898.

Since that time the winery has remained in the Faller family having been passed down to the brothers’ son and nephew Théo.

Théo’s wife Colette, along with daughters Catherine and Laurence, got involved in the family business in 1979, and since 2016, the winery is now being run by Catherine and her two sons Eddy and Théo.

Alsace wine route

Winemaker Eddy Leiber-Faller.

Eddy is the winemaker and has played a crucial role in elevating the winery’s reputation for producing some of the finest wines in the region. We were also incredibly lucky to have him as our host for our first visit to Weinbach.

The estate itself is impressive from the moment you turn off the main road and pull up to its grand entrance featuring large wooden gates, sitting happily ensconced among seemingly endless rows of vineyards. It’s here where Eddy grew up surrounded by vineyards and developed a deep passion for winemaking at an early age.

Standing outside among the vines, Eddy takes us through the winery’s monastic history and also points out where we are directionally to help us get our bearings, “Today we own and farm 38 hectares of vineyards in this valley known as Schlossberg in a radius of 3km around the winery.”

Alsace wine route winery

The stunning estate vineyards at Weinbach.

Those 38 hectares include 30 hectares of Grand Cru vineyards—15 hectares on the hill, 12 hectares inside Schlossberg and 3 more hectares on the lower part of the property—making them the largest owner of Grand Cru vineyards in the region by far.

Unsurprisingly, all of their wines are produced solely from estate fruit though there are only a few wineries that do that in Alsace.

One of the key factors that sets Domaine Weinbach apart from other wineries in Alsace is their commitment to organic and biodynamic farming practices. Eddy and his team work tirelessly to maintain the health of their vineyards and the surrounding ecosystem, using natural methods to control pests and diseases and to enrich the soil. This dedication to sustainable agriculture results in wines that are not only delicious but also reflect the unique terroir of the region.

alsace Wine route winery

Expressing a true sense of place.

In 1998, they started testing out biodynamics on 8 hectares. 7 years later, they converted the balance of their 38 hectares and are now fully certified in both biodynamic (Demeter) and organic (Ecocert) production.

“For us,” Eddy explains, “it [biodynamic farming] provides a very pragmatic and individualized approach with respect to crop management, pruning, our training system, everything. For example, depending on the grape variety, the moisture or the type of soil—that will determine whether we use a single or double guyot or flat cordon method as our training system and we will have different ones for each.”

Alsace wine route winery

a magnified approach.

“Everything is magnified with this approach as the terroir can express itself naturally and it brings out the very unique characteristics with each plot…it shows in its most authentic form.”

Alsace is well-known for its incredible diversity when it comes to terroir and Domaine Weinbach has vineyards in no less than 6 different and distinct ones: The Clos de Capucins, Locality Altenbourg, Grand Cru Schlossberg, Grand Cru Furstentum, Grand Cru Mambourg, and Grand Cru Marckrain.

Grand Cru Schlossberg is the oldest Grand Cru in Alsace. Eddy explains that the soil is revered because of its granite foundation and the sandy top soils resulting from the erosion of the surrounding granite rocks.

Alsace wine route winery

Schlossberg (Castle) hill.

“This soil provides for a very light early ripening terroir and its shallow top soil is great for Riesling so that’s what we have planted most there along with a small amount of Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Muscat too.”

Grand Cru Marckrain on the other hand is predominantly marl and limestone with more recent sedimentary deposits resulting in even more soil diversity than Schlossberg. At this vineyard, they grow Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris, Riesling, and Pinot Noir.

Alsace wine route

Inside the cellar.

In the cellar, the philosophy is very much aligned with their approach in the vineyard—minimal intervention but with a focus on the most minute details to ensure the fruit is able to express itself in its most natural and purest form. After the fruit is hand harvested and brought to the winery, the extractions are gentle and the fermentations long, instigated by indigenous yeasts.

Tasting through their extensive line up of wines (see tasting notes below), you immediately understand how the soil diversity in Alsace provides for such distinct expressions even with the same grape variety.

Domaine Weinbach captures these interpretations beautifully and the result is textured wines with a terrific complexity at very fair prices given the level of quality.

Alsace wine route

High praise for Weinbach wines.

As we’ve learned over several years of visiting top wineries around the world, the result of great terroir in the right hands will achieve every winemaker’s ultimate objective of producing a wine that represents both a true sense of place and is well balanced.

Domaine Weinbach successfully achieves this objective with remarkable consistency thanks to a dedicated approach to respecting the land while paying attention to every detail. It deserves high praise on both counts and has certainly earned its reputation as one of the very best representatives of Alsatian wines.

Tasting Notes

2021 Domaine Weinbach Vignes du Prêcheur

Alsace wine route

2021 Vignes du Prêcheur

A blend of the 5 of the primary grape varieties of the region (Riesling, Pinot Gris, Auxerrois, Sylvaner and Muscat) from a recently purchased vineyard that the Domaine is now farming organically and biodynamically on some plots. Notes of pear and apple are joined by streak of minerality adding interest and linearity to this wine. Medium body and medium acidity, there is great balance to this wine with a long finish. Very refreshing.

Very Good/Excellent



2021 Domaine Weinbach Riesling Théo

Alsace wine route winery

2021 Domaine Weinbach Riesling Théo

Grapes are sourced from their estate vineyard Le Clos des Capucins which sits at the bottom of the famous Grand Cru Schlossberg. Green apple, lime, floral notes and a hint of wet stone come together to make for a delicious and refreshing wine. The body and acidity are medium, and while not the level of body found in their Grand Crus tasted later, there was still plenty of texture.


2020 Domaine Weinbach Riesling Cuvée Colette

Also from the Clos de Capucins, this Riesling takes the intensity up a notch. Apple, pear, citrus and a hint of floral, this wine is structured and racy. The acidity is balanced by ripe fruit which adds complexity of texture to the complexity of flavour. Close to being in the same league as their Grand Crus.


2020 Domaine Weinbach Schlossberg Riesling  Grand Cru

Alsace wine route winery

2020 Schlossberg Riesling  Grand Cru

Schlossberg is royalty among Alsatian vineyards. South facing and steeply pitched, this takes the afternoon sun full on and produces very ripe grapes of great intensity and body. The medium acidity provides just enough frame to the wine but allows its unctuous texture to take centre stage. The flavours are dominated by green apple with secondary notes of white peach and very pronounced minerality. A slight salinity can be detected on the finish. A vinous masterpiece.



2020 Domaine Weinbach Furstentum Three Pinots

Alsace wine route winery

2020 Furstentum Three Pinots

This is a new innovation for Weinbach. Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Auxerrois from the Grand Cru Furstentum Vineyard are co-fermented into a dry, long and delicious wine. Peach, apricot and other stone fruit dominate the palate along with a mineral finish. Intense and textured.


2020 Domaine Weinbach Furstentum Gewurztraminer

Truly an amazing wine! With 32 grams/litre of residual sugar, it barely comes across as sweet. What it does show is incredibly intense flavours of apricot and lychee delivered in a full body, seductively textured wine. Rich, flamboyant and just down right delicious! The finish goes on and on and is tinged with brown spices. This wine will reward time in the cellar.



Domaine Weinbach

Alsace wine route

One of the very best in Alsace.

25 route du Vin

68240 Kientzheim, Alsace

T: +33 3 89 47 38 18

Tastings by appointment: Monday to Saturday 930am-1130am + 130pm-5pm (Closed Sundays)



    Wow! What an amazing experience and your reporting is stellar! I’m not familiar with this winery. Kudos to them for their commitment to bio and organic farming. Will definitely look for these wines!

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    • We were fans before we went to Alsace but visiting the winery and tasting through so many of their wines definitely cemented our love for them. Highly recommend!

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