Start in Flonheim
One Saturday morning in summer, I'm standing in the marketplace in Flonheim, looking around curiously. Half a year ago I was the Hiwweltour Aulheimer Valley hiked past Flonheim. This time I want to explore the village beforehand. A door opens in the house next to the church. "Weingut-Vinothek Klosterhof" is written on the wall of the house.
Shortly afterwards, I met Anke Schäfer from the Winery Klosterhof in conversation. A few years ago, the Schäfer couple converted the house into a vinotheque. Now, in addition to wine tastings, there are also gifts, spices and chutneys. On Fridays and Saturdays the door is open, because it is important to her that people can just come in. As Culture and wine ambassador of Rheinhessen Anke Schäfer introduces guests, hikers and cyclists to the area. With a heavy heart, I say goodbye to her and the wine and drive the car a short distance.
A signposted route leads from the Adelberghalle in Flonheim to the Hiwweltour. I am already looking forward to the Hiwweltour, which is particularly diverse for Rheinhessen. In addition to the inevitable vineyards with the normal vineyard cottages, there are also trulli with stone roofs.
When I first read "Trulli" somewhere, I wondered about the origin of this designation. Last year I had an interview with culture and wine ambassador Thomas Huckle, who enlightened me about it. There would be two explanations. In one version, Apulian masons would have brought the architectural style to Rheinhessen in the 18th century (see also Alberobello, Italy). Hence the names Trullo (singular) and Trulli (plural). In the other version, the construction method was historically already used in the Middle Ages for bakehouses, and by the slowly tapered masonry (Cantilever construction) no wood would be needed (wood would always have been scarce in Rheinhessen).
I suppose it could also be a synthesis of both versions. Perhaps Apulian migrant workers saw the brick cottages and then called them trulli. In any case, there was a shelter for everyone in case of rain or thunderstorms when working in the vineyard with horse or oxen. And nowadays they are real jewels in the vineyards.
Lonsheim lookout tower
I pass quarries, somehow an unfamiliar sight for me. But in the past, sandstone was quarried in the quarries around Flonheim, among other things for the construction of the Cologne and Mainz cathedrals. At the Bornheim lookout tower I already have the first great view. Later I walk longer paths through a forest and come directly to the Lonsheimer lookout tower.
Another highlight is the trullo on the Adelberg, where I not only look into the distance, but also into the Aulheim valley. I remember the inscription "J7HZ56" on the trullo. Culture and wine ambassador Huckle explained to me at the time in an interview that the signs stood for the year of construction 1756 and the builder Johannes (Hans) Zimmer from Flonheim. I like it up here, next to the trullo are a table and seating.
Someday, I firmly resolve, I will also once at the wine experience "Trullo in flames" be there. But today and now I want to go back to Flonheim.
This time I shorten the Hiwweltour, because I want to turn in time in Veronikas wine bistro. And so I turn then again and down to Flonheim.
Veronika's wine bistro
I actually make it into Veronika's wine bistrobefore more and more guests arrive and decimate the selection of delicious cakes and pies. In the café behind the Flonheim marketplace, I can still have a chat with Veronika Roos. She has always loved baking cakes and offering them to guests at her parents' winery and country hotel. After her studies, she returned, went into business for herself with her dream and opened the wine bistro.
Two pieces of cake heavier I say goodbye to go to the Information desk and the local museum on the market square. On the upper floor of the red baroque house I learn a lot about the history of the area and the many quarries. At first I wonder about the skeleton of the manatee "Floni". But then I learn that 30 million years ago the sea coast ran here. I even make it to the Saturday guided tour of the village. Afterwards I am "flat" from the many impressions.
At least I have a few bottles of wine in the trunk for later relaxation. I will certainly return for another exploration of Flonheim and for a third hike of the Hiwweltour. Most certainly my wife will be there then, because she is to invite me for coffee and cake.
My article first appeared in the Vacation catalog Rheinhessen 2018 (order as well as download as PDF). For this blog article I have adapted and expanded the text and added more photos.