The undiscovered region of Germany where you can get your wine fix

Baden-Württemberg
There is a holiday alternative for oenophiles: Baden-Württemberg Credit: Getty

T三级成人视频he holiday map may be shrinking as Europe weathers a resurgance in infection rates and country's go back into lockdown, but that's all the more reason to look ahead to next year.

Autumn is usually a spectacular time to go on a wine-tasting tour. Leaves turn a kaleidoscope of colours, and vineyards blaze in the evening sunshine. If you can't enjoy this opportunity in 2020, there's somewhere new to consider for October 2021: Germany’s undiscovered wine-making region in Baden-Württemberg.

This area has become something of a home from home for me after my German neighbour in London hot-footed it back to her picturesque village of Kleinbottwar after the Brexit vote.

三级成人视频The village and its neighbour Grosbottwar are both on Württemberger Weinstraße, which starts at Weikersheim Castle further north and ends at Kressbronn on Lake Constance in the south.

It snakes 316 miles (510km) through stunning landscape towards Stuttgart and beyond, making the lower section of the route an incredibly accessible destination even for a last-minute long weekend (quarantine, and other travel restrictions, permitting).

While some villages here suffered bomb-raids during the Second World War, many of the traditional half-timbered houses do remain amid the more suburban seventies streets, and the surrounding countryside is beautiful.

三级成人视频Gentle vine-covered slopes lined by forests stretch out across the skyline, which is occasionally punctuated by steeper hills topped with medieval castles, and the entire area is interlinked with miles of safe and scenic cycle track should you choose to do your wine-tasting by bike.

A good place to start a tour of local wine-makers in this particular section of the Weinstrasse is at Graf Adelmann. The medieval castle, surrounded by parkland, was bought by the Count of Adelmann in 1914, but its wine-making history stretches back much further: the Schaubeck family built their manor on the site of a Roman villa, and their wines have been served across Europe for hundreds of years.

My German friend tells me her father used to joke that the Swabians – famous across Germany for being money-wise – “like their wine so much they keep it to themselves”.

And Felix Adelmann, who took over the business from his father 10 years ago, confirms that currently little of his wine is exported as the domestic market is so buoyant.

The autumn colours developing in Kleinbottwar Credit: Getty

“Graf Adelmann is one of the most beautiful wineries in the whole of Germany,” he said. “We have 800 years of history of wine-making here and are most famous for our blended wines, which my father pioneered in the eighties when no one in Germany had really thought about it.”

三级成人视频On the first Thursday of every month, there is an open wine-tasting including a cellar tour and food (€39/£35; ). Visitors should phone ahead to book.

三级成人视频The vineyard produces 60 per cent reds, primarily made from Lemberger or Spätburgunder varieties – there is a new Pinot Rosé sparkling on its way. Prices start from €8 (£7.12).

While in Kleinbottwar, it’s worth stopping at Reinhard Schäfer to sample their organic wines.

三级成人视频The cellar offers group wine-tasting sessions where Reinhard will often get out his guitar and play in between the opening of each bottle, and there’s an off-licence, which (in normal times) is open in weekday afternoons from 5pm-6.30pm and from 8am-1pm on Saturdays. You can try before you buy – plus there is a nice sideline in homemade knitted socks.

A short drive or cycle from Kleinbottwar takes you to the historic villages of Marbach, Besigheim and Hessigheim, built on the banks of the River Neckar. As well as being on the wine route, these villages also feature on the Deutsche Fachwerkstrasse – the German Half-Timbered House Road – and it’s worth making a detour to the nearby Baroque Ludwigsburg Palace, dubbed the “Versailles of Swabia”.

The vertiginous vineyards next to the Neckar are some of the most stunning you’ll encounter – a natural amphitheatre has been strengthened with dry stonewall, with steep stairways running up from the river.

Ludwigsburg Palace Credit: Getty

It provides a unique microclimate, as the sun reflects off the river onto the vines and produces what the local co-operative, Felsengarten Kellerei () calls “grapes ennobled by nature”.

三级成人视频There’s usually a wide selection of wine tours and activities although the pandemic has disrupted the current schedule. However, the co-op has three shops where it’s possible to sample their most famous tipple, Trollinger. There are gorgeous views down over the river, and it’s the perfect starting place for a hike through “Felsengartenland”.

三级成人视频With all that drinking going on, it’s advisable to line one’s stomach with a few local specialities, and happily they are suitably hearty. Spätzle, a kind of egg pasta, features on nearly every menu in the area, accompanied by Linsen, a lentil stew, as does Maultaschen, a meat or vegetable filled pasta that was invented by Cistercian monks to hide meat inside during Lent.

After the harvest each year, winemakers like Waldbüsser () in Kleinbottwar run temporary bars called Besenwirtschaft (literally a “broom pub”) where they sell their wine to visitors alongside local sausages.

They can only be open for a limited number of weeks a year, and a brightly lit broom outside indicates they’re open for business.

If you're looking ahead to next Christmas, the region is ideal for a trip over the festive season itself, pandemic permitting: on New Year’s Eve, there’s no better place to be than in the vineyards above one of these wine villages. Locals head up with drinks and selection of fireworks, and there’s an incredible view as the whole of Stuttgart lights up at midnight with an incredible firework display.

How to do it

Kleinbottwar and the surrounding region is just 40 minutes’ drive from Stuttgart airport, with EuroWings () offering flights from €29.99 (£27.15).

Hotel Bruker () is an ideal base for exploring the wine region. The wood-panelled rooms are simple, but pleasant, and you can taste the owners’ wine (notable for its striking labels) while eating in their exceptional restaurant, Magdalen’s. Doubles from €104 (£94.15).

三级成人视频Restaurant Zum Ochsen () is slightly more formal, and showcases the best of Swabian cuisine. There are also rooms on site, and it’s ideally located in the centre of Oberstenfeld, close to Grosbottwar. Rooms from around €100 (£90).