The metropolis of the red Moselle vineyard peach
Cochem is considered the metropolis of the red Moselle vineyard peach. Perhaps you are now wondering, “Peaches by the Moselle? Aren’t these fruits more typically to be found in southern climes? And what does a peach have to do with vineyards?”
Here’s a piece of cultural history
It was the ancient Romans who brought the "Persian apple" to the Moselle. Since then, it has been a close friend of the grapevines: providing an enrichment to the vintner’s cuisine, while its delicate little trees barely take up any space in the vineyards. In April it reveals its talent as a herald of spring when its branches burst into pink buds, long before the first signs of green began to sprout on the vines. In autumn its deep red leaves create fiery highlights in the yellow Riesling landscape.
Nowhere else can you experience this firework of colours more intensely than around Cochem. Four-fifths of the peach trees in the Moselle decorate the slops of our region – which is why it is referred to as "Cochem – Metropolis of the red Moselle vineyard peach"!
With the recent return to traditional culinary secrets and increasing interest in natural, healthy products, the red Moselle vineyard peach is currently experiencing a Renaissance.
It also has another string to its bow: it is also a protector of the environment. The peach provides an additional source of income for the winegrowers who cultivate it on the steep slopes of the area under the most difficult of conditions. It therefore helps them to secure the survival of their businesses.
What does that have to do with protecting nature? A lot! In the warm dry walls of the Moselle hills lives a small but previous society of extremely rare animal species, such as the Mountain Apollo butterfly and the Green Lizard, as well as unusual varieties of plants. If their habitat were to be taken over by woodland again, this would almost certainly mean their death. But who thinks about such matters when they are sitting in a lush green setting or a cosy wine bar and enjoying the sensation of a vintner’s crisp sparkling wine on their tongue, refined with a dash of vineyard peach liqueur?
A little thing of wonders
A red vineyard peach is like an Aladdin’s lamp: inconspicuous at first glance, almost worthless. But once Aladdin discovered what a benevolent genie lived within, from then on he never wanted to be without it. It is a similar thing the first time you hold a red Moselle vineyard peach in your hand: the fruit is small, hard and enrobed in mouse-grey fur. But what a genie of a spirit lies within! Its ruby red flesh is a real delicacy, whether enjoyed classically as jam, in a trendy Moselle Kir or as an accompaniment to the regional potato-based dish “Debbekooche”. Even in exotic dishes it holds its own, or it can be enjoyed in spicy chutneys or caramelised until crispy on top of a panna cotta, to list but a few examples. However, its sharp yet sweet magic is not only limited to feats of the culinary kind. It also does wonders for your health as it contains twice as many antioxidants as the healthy apple, helping to protect against cancer and arteriosclerosis. It is also a real child of nature and especially strict ecological regulations exist regarding its cultivation.
To celebrate the importance of this special fruit in a fitting manner, there are regular festivals are held in its honour in Cochem:
- The blossom festival of the red Moselle vineyard peach is held in the square “Endertplatz” in Cochem every second Sunday in April (if Easter Sunday falls on this date, the festival is postponed for a week).
- Every second Saturday in September the Red Moselle Vineyard Peach Day is held in the form of a market.