Winemaker:  Joyce Kékkö- van Rennes
Growing:  Chardonnay, Pinot Noir
Established:  1990
Bottles:  110,000
Region:  AOC Haspengouw, Belgium

By all accounts, Belgium’s first vineyards were planted by monks in the 10th century. Though, from the 1600s, a period of poor harvests and global cooling (known as the Little Ice Age) resulted in the country’s gradual shift from wine to beer.

Times have changed, and average temperatures in Belgian Limburg have risen to levels comparable to that of Burgundy in the 1970s.

For Wijnkasteel Genoels-Elderen, the nation’s largest wine domain, the Burgundian comparisons are unavoidable: winemaker Joyce van Rennes studied in Burgundy, the original vines were sourced from a Burgundian supplier, and, just like in Burgundy, the roots draw from a limestone subsoil. 

*Photo copyright: Benelux Wine, Wijnkasteel Genoels-Elderen