History

It appears that the Grünhaus estate was densely settled even in Roman times. Roman flat bricks in the foundations of the manor house, pottery remains, and roof and wall tiles suggest that a ‘Villa Rustica’ once stood on the site of the present Schloss. There is evidence that wine was produced on the estate in Roman times: discoveries include the remains of a pottery, which produced amphorae for storing wine, along with Roman grape harvester’s knives.

The first documentary evidence of Grünhaus, then called ‘Villa ad Valles’, dates from 6 February 966. Emperor Otto 1, heir of Charlemagne, confirmed a donation that had been made in the 7th century by the Frankish King Dagobert. At that time, the buildings, vineyards and surrounding land had been given to the Benedictine monastery of Saint Maximin in Trier. This document is currently in the Biobliothèque Nationale in Paris.

Until the end of the 18th century Maximin Grünhaus was managed by the Abbey of Saint Maximin. After all church property was secularised by Napoleon, the estate was held under French administration until 1810. In that year, the estate was sold to Friedrich Freiherr von Handel. Forty years later, it passed to his grandson, Friedrich Freiherr von Solemacher.

In 1882 Carl Ferdinand Freiherr von Stumm-Halberg bought the Grünhaus estate which consisted of vineyards, a farm, and extensive woodland. Investing heavily, he transformed it into one of the most modern of its time. A turbine in the Ruwer provided electricity to power countless machines, including the hydraulic presses in the cuverie. Small locomotives ran on the vineyard roads, and a cable car transported equipment around the vineyard.

The von Stumm’s only son died early, so their daughter Ida received the estate as her dowry on the day of her wedding to Conrad von Schubert, later to be a lieutenant general. With the change of name at the end of the nineteenth century, the label changed too. Until today the unmistakeable art nouveau label has been used for all Rieslings from the estate. On the left, next to a view of Grünhaus and pretty vine motifs, is a golden oval frame bearing the coat of arms of the von Schuberts, flanked by two cherubs. The animal in the coat of arms is a snorting steamhorse with a sword between its front hooves. This refers to the achievements of Conrad von Schubert, who founded the first railway engineer regiment, and was ennobled by the German emperor. On the coat of arms a miner’s lamp and a cog can also be seen, in recognition of the Stumm family mines and steelworks in the Saarland.

Dr. Carl von Schubert, who now runs the business, comes from the fifth generation of the family. His doctoral thesis examined the economy of viticulture on steep slopes.


A Story

The right amount of wine

In the Benedictine abbey of Maximin, a centuries-old tradition held that a generous ration of wine could be enjoyed by the monks...
complete story

The business acumen of the English Court

In May 1991 the outstanding 1990 vintage was put on to the market. One of the most prestigious London merchants enquired about their usual quantity...
complete story

Technical innovation

After the purchase of the property by Carl Ferdinand Freiherr von Stumm-Halberg, substantial investment turned it into a model estate...
complete story

The airborne manure heap

At the beginning of the 20th century, new vineyards were planted on the slopes at Grünhaus, requiring regular fertilisation with horse manure...
complete story

The most expensive Fuder cask of Mosel wine

In 1923, when the legendary 1921 vintage was put to auction in Trier, the top Grünhaus wine, a Fuder cask (1000 litres) of Herrenberg "Trockenbeerenauslese"...
complete story