Clos Saint Landelin,
The Muré family’s precious monopole
Clos Saint Landelin lies just to the south of the town of Rouffach.
This property, once owned by the bishopric of Strasbourg, was a gift by Bishop Heddon to the Saint Landelin convent in the 8th century. The deed of covenant refers to “vineyards that are among the best in Alsace”.
Alfred, grandfather of René Muré, acquired the domaine in 1935, which is now in the sole – and proud – ownership of the Muré family.
Elegant and complex, the wines from this outstanding vineyard develop fine fruit aromas and are extremely long-lived.
Depending on the year, Clos Saint Landelin also produces top-quality Vendanges Tardives (late harvest) and Sélection de Grains Nobles (botrytis-affected) wines.
Very stony clay-limestone topsoil.
Subsoil of calcareous sandstone from the Bajocian era with limestone conglomerates from the Oligocene.
Situated at the southern end of the Grand Cru Vorbourg vineyard.
Terrace-grown vines with very steep slopes.
12 hectares (25 acres)
Riesling: at the bottom of the slope
Gewurztraminer and Muscat: in the central section of the slope
Pinot Gris: in the southwest corner
Pinot Noir: on the flat
Sylvaner: in the southeast corner
The bishops of Strasbourg were the owners of the town of Rouffach and the surrounding area from the 7th century until the French Revolution. At this time, Rouffach was the capital of the “Obermundat”.
Landelin, an Irish monk, came to this area to convert the pagans early in the 7th century. He met with a violent death around the year 640. Five springs gushed forth from the place where he was slain and several miracles took place on his grave. He was canonised not long after his death, as was the custom at the time. Shortly afterwards a group of monks settled down nearby, establishing a monastery in St Landelin’s honour, on a site east of the Rhine around the year 725.
Heddon (734-776), bishop of Strasbourg, set about reorganizing this monastery, called Mönchzell, “cella monacorum”. He later set up a second and bigger monastery a short distance away from the first one.
This monastery was called Ettenheimmünster (from “Ettonis Monasterium” meaning Heddon’s monastery) in the memory of its benefactor. It was endowed with lands, vines, houses and servants from the Rouffach area. This endowment was called “praedium Sancti Landelini”, the Saint Landelin Estate.
The vineyards were chosen from among the best available according to the donation act of the time. They are still located on the southern headland of the Strangenberg, in the very old localities called “Altengassen”, “Vorberg” -original name of the grand cru “Vorbourg”, “Rothengarten”, “Hauhl” and “Mannberg”.
The “Liber Vitae” book, which was written between 1250 and 1372 and documents the donations and legacies to the “Notre-Dame” church of Rouffach, mentions vines situated near the Saint Landelin Estate several times (public records of Rouffach, “Fonds A”, GG, Liber Vitae).
In 1409, the Saint Landelin Estate became an hereditary leasehold of the Berler family from Rouffach, but still remained ecclesiastical property. During the French Revolution the Estate was shared between several private owners.
It was not until the second half of the 19th century that the Clos Saint Landelin vineyard enjoyed a new development; this was due to Dr Wolfgang Weber, who was a real pioneer of Alsatian wine growing. Under the German domination, the vineyard was used as a model by the Agricultural School of Rouffach (which was established by that time).
Impounded after 1918, the Clos Saint Landelin was bought by the owner of a mill, Mr Erny, in 1923. He carried on Dr Weber’s work for seven years. In 1930, he sold the Clos St Landelin vineyard with the stocks in barrels and in bottles to a company called “l’Union Vinicole du Haut-Rhin SA” of Colmar.
This company only owned the vineyard for five years, after which it was purchased in 1935 by Mr Alfred Muré of Rouffach, René’s grandfather..
The Grand Cru Vorbourg is located in Rouffach, in the south of Alsace, and is sheltered by the Petit Ballon and the Grand Ballon, two of the highest peaks of the Vosges. Its marly-limestone soil rests on Oolithic (Jurassic) limestone and Oligocene limestone conglomerates. It is rich in iron, which gives it a characteristic red ochre colour. The Vorbourg is exposed to the south and south-east.
«V» is the initial of Vorbourg, the terroir from which this wine originates. As of today, according to the specifications of the Alsatian Grands Crus, the name Vorbourg can only be attributed to the white grape varieties Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris or Muscat.
Though situated only 500 metres (1500 feet) away from Clos Saint Landelin, the plots in the Vorbourg vineyard are richer in clay. They produce powerful, velvety wines, elegant expressions of fruit aromas with good acidity on the finish.
Clay-limestone soil with occasional patches of loess in the downhill sections.
Riesling, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Noir V.
The term “sunny head” best translates the Alsatian dialect name “Sonne Koepflé”, which later became Zinnkoepflé.
Zinnkoepflé gives fresh, spicy wines with intense floral aromas, startling and seductive with pronounced minerality.
Calcareous sandstone topsoil with a predominance of shell limestone (Muschelkalk) from the Triassic period.
Situated in the Soultzmatt Valley
Steep slopes, at 420 metres (1200 feet) above sea level, Zinnkoepflé is the highest grand cru vineyard in Alsace.
Gewurztraminer and Riesling
The Steinstuck is a nice place nestled above the village of Westhalten and gives racy and fresh wines marked by mineral and chalky notes and wet rock. The limestone terroir, very stony gives the name Steinstuck which means “stones plot” in alsacian language.
The plateau located above the Clos Saint Landelin is named “Lutzeltal”. The origin of this name is “lutzel” or “litzel” (little) and “tal” (vale). In fact, this plateau has the shape of a widened vale.
The soil is particularly stony there : it is sandy limestone with a little clay. The climate is very dry, due to the exposure to the wind and to the fact that Rouffach is the area in Alsace with the lowest precipitations. This makes us training the vine to have deep roots, and avoiding high yields.
The wines are very delicate, and characterised by an aromatic palette based on fruits. The Lutzeltal produces beautiful pinot gris.
Côte de Rouffach is a collection of south and southeast-facing slopes grouped around the small town of Rouffach.
Sheltering in the lea of the Vosges, which protects them from maritime influences, these slopes bask in sunshine: the ideal conditions for full ripening of the grapes. Wines grown here are distinguished by their delicacy, fruitiness and freshness.
Ses vins se reconnaissent par leur délicatesse, leur fruité et leur fraîcheur.
An Appellation Communale :
In 2005, the Institut National des Appellations d’Origine (INAO) conferred on Côte de Rouffach the status of Appellation Communale (of which there are only ten), a category above the straight Alsace AOC appellation and just below Grand Cru.
Clay-limestone soils with good drainage.
Various slopes around the town of Rouffach.
Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir