The Rhine Valley, along the 50° of latitude. The region is practically one long hillside on the northern bank of the river on its 30-km (20-mile) east-west journey from Wicker and Hochheim (near the confluence of the Main and Rhine rivers) to the river's bend at Rüdesheim and beyond, to the border with the Mittelrhein at Lorchhausen.
Wiesbaden, Eltville, Rüdesheim.
Mild winters and warm summers. The vineyards are protected from cold winds by the forest-capped Taunus Hills and benefit from the heat-reflecting surface of the Rhine.
Although the region is compact, there are many kinds of soil, including chalk, sand, gravel, all types of clay, loess, quartzite and slate.
Vineyard area (2003):
3,167 ha / 7,825 acres · 1 district · 10 collective vineyard sites · 100+ individual sites
Grape varieties [white 84.4% · red 15.6%] (2003):
Riesling (78.2%), Spätburgunder (12.7%), Müller-Thurgau (1.9%) as well as Ehrenfelser, Kerner and Weissburgunder.
Compared with other German wine regions, the Rheingau has a high proportion of full-time wine-growers; sales of bottled, rather than bulk, wine predominate; and much of the region's wine is sold directly to consumers. The region enjoys a broad domestic and international following.
Signposted routes through wine country:
Rheingauer Riesling Route (driving) · Rheingauer Riesling Pfad (hiking) · Rheingauer Radwanderweg (cycling)