The "Weingut & Brennerei Stern" is located in the municipality of Hochstadt (area Südliche Weinstraße) in the German wine-growing region Palatinate
. In 1952 the trained cooper Josef Stern bought his first vineyard, in 1960 the first self-distilled schnapps followed. The son Wolfgang, who was trained as a winegrower and cellar master, took over the business in 1980 and started bottling for the first time. Since 2003, the business has been managed together with son Dominic, who completed his training as "Technician for Viticulture and Oenology" in and gained practical experience at well-known companies in the Southern Palatinate, South Africa and the Austrian Wachau. The vineyards cover 8.5 hectares of vineyards in the Roter Berg (Hochstadt) single vineyard. They are planted with the white wine varieties Riesling, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Silvaner, Müller-Thurgau, Kerner, Morio-Muscat and Gewürztraminer, as well as the red wine varieties Pinot Noir, St. Laurent, Dornfelder, Portugieser, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot
We consistently practice close-to-nature, environmentally friendly viticulture with, for example, the renunciation of nitrogen fertilizers
and environmentally friendly pest
control with pheromones
. Important quality criteria in the vineyard are short pruning
, removal of double shoots during budding and thinning out
(green harvesting), so that the vine is reduced by a multiple of the normal hanging during the vegetation period. In the cellar, grapes, must and wine are gently processed. After controlled fermentation at 15 to 19 °Celsius and long yeast storage, the white wines are vinified according to their variety. The best vintage Rieslings and Pinot Blanc are fermented with natural yeasts and matured in large wooden barrels and in barriques. The red wines mature after traditional mash fermentation in large oak barrels, the highest quality wines up to 18 months in new barriques. We also produce bottle-fermented sparkling wines, noble brandies (fruit, yeast, marc) and liqueurs.