Behind the Vines: Meet Andrea Wirsching

Welcome to #BehindtheVines, a series that profiles one producer from Bordeaux or Germany to give you a new perspective on the growers who prune, pick and package your favorite wines. This month, we’re highlighting Andrea Wirsching, the 14th generation winemaker at Weingut Hans Wirsching, one of Franken’s most renowned estates and a top producer of Silvaner bottled in the region’s famous Bocksbeutel shape. 

Photo credit: Hans Wirsching 

Meet Andrea Wirsching 

Estate: Hans Wirsching 

Region: Franken 

Focus: 40% Silvaner, 20% Riesling, 18% Traminer, 8% Pinot Blanc, 7% Pinot Noir, 7% Scheurebe 

Photo credit: Hans Wirsching 


Based in the picturesque medieval town of Iphofen in Franken, the Wirschings’ involvement in viticulture dates back to 1528 when the family donated a vineyard to the Abbey at Ebrach. After centuries of winemaking, the family nearly abandoned the tradition in the late 19th century due to the devastation of the European wine industry caused by phylloxera–a vineyard insect–if not for Hans Wirsching. The 23-year-old replanted the vineyards with American rootstocks and Scheurebe, helping to establish the variety in Germany and revitalizing his family’s winery.  

Since 2014, the estate has been managed by Andrea Wirsching, the CEO and 14th generation of the family to oversee the winemaking process. Andrea grew up around the vineyards, assisting with wine production and sales throughout her childhood and teenage years. Though she studied history at university, Andrea was inspired to carry on her family’s winemaking tradition after a touching moment with her father in the Julius-Echter-Berg. Taking in the world-famous vineyard’s breathtaking landscape, Andrea knew she was destined to continue the Wirsching legacy from the 1500s. 

Photo credit: Hans Wirsching 


Located about an hour and a half east of Frankfurt, Weingut Hans Wirsching’s over 220-acre estate is made up of four vineyards located on a steep slope in the best parcels of Iphofen: Julius-Echter-Berg, Kronsberg, Kammer and Kalb. All of the vineyard sites feature gypsum keuper, a mineral-rich Jurassic-era sediment that creates rich, full wines with lower acidity levels compared to chalky soils. 

  • Julius-Echter-Berg: This Erste Lage, or premier cru, vineyard is the warmest in Franken and features a gradient of up to 60 percent, producing wines with an herbaceous spiciness. 
  • Kronsberg: With a name meaning the “crown,” this is one of Franken’s top sites, featuring a cooler climate and producing wines with delicate fruit, great harmony and excellence.  
  • Kammer: Dating back to the 15th century, this site was reinvigorated in 2018 and is home to Hans Wirsching’s Grosse Gewächs, or grands crus, and grows exclusively Riesling and Silvaner. 
  • Kalb: The Kalb slope sits on its own and was deforested in the Middle Ages; this site produces quality dry wines with a lighter body due to a higher gypsum content. 

Photo credit: Hans Wirsching 


One of the largest private wineries in Germany, Hans Wirsching produces 37,000 cases of wine each year, 99% of which are dry. The estate’s main varieties are representative of Franken, with the focus predominantly on Silvaner (40%), Riesling (20%) and Scheurebe (7%). Certified for sustainable viticulture, Hans Wirsching prioritizes small quantities of excellent grapes over mass production, combining conventional and organic methods in the vineyards for the best results. 

For an introduction to their wines, Andrea recommends the Iphöfer Kalb Silvaner Trocken, Franken’s flagship grape. The dry yet fruity wine features an elegant acidity and aromas of hay, apple and melon—of course, bottled in the region’s trademark Bocksbeutel. 

“We strive to produce elegant dry wines from healthy grapes. We work sustainably and naturally. Providing good service and dedicating a lot of time to our private customers are a matter of course for us.”  

Photo credit: Hans Wirsching 

Explore more from Hans Wirsching’s U.S importer, German Wine Collection 

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