Brand of Turckheim
The name Brand has appeared for a very long time in the town archives of Turckheim, a reminder that this part of the hill was eroded by fire. Brand means land of fire.
Legend has it that the sun fought a dragon in this Grand Cru vineyard. The latter was vanquished and obliged to withdraw into a dark cavern under the Brand, which explains the characteristic warmth of this locality’s soil.
The reputation of the Turckheim wines goes back to the Middle Ages and the Brand is the best known vineyard. It is a place name found again and again among the Grand Cru vineyards of Alsace throughout history.
This place name lies entirely on a substratum known as the Turckheim granite. The soil is made up of a granite and black mica regolith1, the best provider of trace elements in the soil. A granitic sand of this type, when it is quite old, produces a soil of some depth: a silty coarse sand (arenite) which allows the roots to travel down through fissures in the earth. On the part of the Brand composed of granite and two types of mica (Brand and Steinglitz), erosion and rainwater infiltration of this acidic soil favours the formation of tiny quantities of clay very rich in trace elements which accumulate in the deep fissures of this vineyard locality. As the vines get older, they push down their roots sufficiently deep to reach these trace elements which means they no longer suffer from the driest microclimate in Alsace.
Towards the Schnekelsbourg, one finds muschelkalk at depth providing better hydration and minerals in an area which suffers greatly from its poor soil.
The average to steep slope is oriented south and southeast. The Brand vineyard enjoys an exceptional amount of sunshine and is sheltered from the north winds.
We only plant riesling in our Brand vineyard. This variety acquires finesse and elegance (floral and fruit aromas) without ever becoming coarse or too heavy. The Brand always surprises by the precocity of its wines, but while good young, they have the ability to age very well. By the nature of the soil, it is easy to harvest the riesling when it is absolutely ripe but especially with fine acidity (the malic acid being more degraded in poor and warm localities).