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  • Fribourg, Jura and Berne Wine Regions

    Fribourg Swiss Wine

    Fribourg Swiss WineWhile Neuchâtel wines originate from the north-western shores of the eponymous lake, those of Fribourg are made to the east of Lac de Neuchâtel, from around Broye in the south and Vully in the north. Vully’s vineyards stretch to between the lakes of Neuchâtel and Morat. The ground here is clay, sand, and calciferous sandstone. The climate is clearly moderated by the lake. The Chasselas grape holds sway here too but there are a number of interesting specialities such as the wines of Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Riesling x Sylvaner (Müller-Thurgau), and Freisammer, which is a cross between Sylvaner and Pinot Gris. There is also an excellent Swiss wines like Oeil-de-Perdrix and superb Pinot Noir.

  • Friuli Aquileila DOC

     

    FRIULI AQUILEIA DOC ITALIAN WINES

    Aquilelia Italian wineThis is the southernmost Friuli wine area. The vineyards stretch from the Adriatic coast to the border with Isonzo. Very worthy white Italian wines are made here from Pinot Bianco, Tocai Friulano, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Riesling Renano, Traminer, Sauvignon Blanc, and Verduzzo Friulano; fresh and fruity Rosato wines from Merlot, the Cabernets, and Refosco, plus excellent reds from Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso is the most exciting and authentic of the wines (see also Collio and Isonzo).

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  • Friuli Wine DOC

     

    COLLI ORIENTALI DEL FRIULI DOC ITALIAN WINES

    colli-orientali-del-friuli-venezia-giulia-italyThese Italian wines originate from the province of Udine where you find varietal wines of a specific grape. There are first class Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon, Chardonnay, and Riesling Renano wines and excellent Traminer Aromático, which is full- bodied, sultry, and has a very intense bouquet and taste. Drink this Italian wine at 46.4- 50.0°F (8-10°C) except the Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, and Traminer Aromático 50-53.6°F (10-12°C).

    The following wines are very typical of the region. Tocai Friulano: golden to lemon yellow, refined bouquet, fulsome and warm taste with discernible bitter almond note. Temperature for this Italian wine when you drink is 50-53.6°F (10-12°C).

  • Friuli-Venezia Giulia

     

    Friuli-Venezia Giulia Italian Wines

    Colli Orientali Friuli LabelThe area is partially mountainous but the vineyards are concentrated in the green river valleys (Tagliamento and Isonzo) and on the sunny slopes. The climate is a favourable combination of mild maritime (the Adriatic) and harsh continental (the Alps). The soil is mainly scree carried in the last ice age. Just as in Alsace and certain other northern Italian wine areas, Priuli is used as a generic name followed by the dominant grape used in its production.

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  • Gaillac French Wines

    Gaillac French wine was already known in the fifth century, particularly in ecclesiastical circles. With the arrival of the Benedictine monks in the tenth century Gaillac became known as one of the best winegrowing areas of France. The vineyards cover 2,500 hectares on either side of the river Tarn, stretching from the town of Albi, north of Toulouse. The soil on the left bank of the Tarn is poor, consisting of stone and gravel, which is ideal for red French wine. The right bank of the Tarn is more complex and diverse with granite, chalk, and sandstone predominant. White, rose, and red French wines are produced, with the current production of Gaillac consisting for 60 per cent of red wine.

    The white Gaillac French wine is made with Mauzac grapes, which are also found in Languedoc (Limoux) and in various small southwestern wine-growing areas. Mauzac is supplemented here with the Len de l’el grape for its finesse and aromatic strength. The Len de l'el grape is also grown in both French and Spanish Catalonia. French wine from the right bank is wellbalanced and possesses rich fruitiness, floral bouquets, and is very fresh. The modern-style white wines are slightly less broad, lithe, and lingering in their aftertaste than the traditional Mauzac and Len de l'el wines. This French wines produced on the left bank are fruity, juicy, and warm. Drink Gaillac white at 10°C, and the sweet white at 8°C.

    There is also sparkling white Gaillac, available in two types: the methode artisanale is achieved without the addition of liqueur. The gas bubbles are created by the fermentation of the sugars already present in this French wine. This Gaillac methode artisanale is very fruity and full of character. Gaillac methode traditionnelle is produced with a second fermentation in the bottle after a dose of liqueur has been added to this French wine. This sparkling wine is perhaps somewhat fresher but less complex and above all less fruity. Drink it as an aperitif at about 8°C.

    Gaillac French rose is generally made by modern means using the saignee method (early drawing off during the steeping of the wine of a little red and subsequent vinification as white Frech wine). This is a friendly, fairly light, and easily drinkable rose. Drinking temperature for a good French wine: 10- 12°C (50- 53 .6°F) .

    Gaillac red Frech wine is made with the Duras grape, an old variety that made a comeback about twenty years ago, to which the native Braucol or Brocol (local names for the Per Servadou or Mansoi) is added. Duras imparts colour, backbone, and refinement to the wine while Braucol gives it fleshiness and rustic charm together with superb aromas of black currant and raspberry. The red French wine made by modern methods from grapes grown on chalky soils are light, aromatic, and easy to drink. This French wine has much in common with the Gaillac rose. A warm, stronger, but more lithe red with plenty of fruit aromas (preserved fruit, red currant and blackcurrant) originates from the granite soil of the hills. This French wine can be readily laid down. The red wine from the left bank is darker in colour and more richly flavoured, with bouquet of preserved fruit, spices, and blackcurrant. This French wine, which is robust and rich in tannin, needs to be aged in the bottle for some years. Drink the modern-style Gaillac French wine at 14-16°C (57.2-60. 8°F), and the traditional and robust red at 16°C (60. 8°F).

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  • Galicia Spanish Wine

    The north west

    The following autonomies or areas are found in north-western Spain: Galicia, the Pals Vasco, Castilla y Leon, Asturias, and Cantabria. The latter two of these autonomies only produce vinos de mesa. The other areas can be split into their DO wine-growing areas.

     

    Conditions

    The climate of north west Spain is clearly influenced by the Bay of Biscay and the Atlantic Ocean. The weather is much cooler, wetter, and more windy than the rest of the country. Daily life is clearly marked by the sea and fishing.

    This part of Spain is less typically Spanish, having more Celtic and Basque characteristics with little sign of the Castilian and Moorish invasion. The local dishes are inspired by the sea's harvest: fish and other seafood. The local Spanish wine is generally white, dry, fresh, and light, with the exception of a few red wines.

  • GAMBELLARA DOC ITALIAN WINES

    Recioto Gambellara ClassicoGambellara is a pleasing white wine made from the Garganega grape, supplemented as required with other non aromatic white grapes to a maximum of 20%.There is a slight bitterness in the finish. The heart of the Gambellara area is permitted to add the term Classico to the label. Drinking temperature for this Gambellara wine is 50- 53.6°F (10-12°C).

     

    GAMBELLARA RECIOTO DOC WINE

    The same grapes are used for the Recioto as for ordinary Gambellara, except that for this wine the grapes are first partially sun dried. This concentrates the sugars, flavour, and aromatic substances and produces a wine that is golden yellow with a strong nose of overripe grapes or raisins. The taste varies from sweet to very sweet and some of these wines may have a slight natural sparkle to them. Drink this Gambellara wine at 42.5- 50°F/6-10°C (the sweeter, the colder). There are also Gambellara Recioto Spumante and Gambellara Recioto Classico versions.

     

    GAMBELLARA VIN SANTO DOC WINE

    TPrime Brume Gambellara Classicohis is a superlative form of the Recioto. It is dark golden in colour and has an impressive bouquet of sweet raisins and these can also be discovered in the velvet smooth taste. This wine contains at least 14 % alcohol. Drink at 42.5- 46.4°F (6-8°C) or 46.4-50°F (8-10°C) for connoisseurs.

    PROSECCO DI CONEGLIANO-VALDOBBIADENEI

    PROSECCO DI CONEGLIANOI

    PROSECCO DI VALDOBBIADENE DOC

    These three wines originate from the north of a triangle formed by the towns of Padua, Vincenza, and Treviso. All three wines are made from Prosecco grapes, supplemented where required with not more than 15% Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio, or Chardonnay. There are two main types of Prosecco, Prosecco Frizzante is slightly sparkling, pale gold, very fruity, juicy, and particularly pleasing.

    The Prosecco Spumante is much more lively, fresh, fruity, and filled with flavour. Both wines are available as secco (dry, light, elegant, with a hint of bitter almond), amabile (slightly sweet and very fruity), and dolce (fully sweet and fruity). You may also encounter a Prosecco Superiore di Cartizze.

     This wine originates from a strictly defined area of Cartizze (near San Pietro di Barbozza in Valdobbiadene). The taste is virtually identical to the other Prosecco wines. Drink at 42.5- 46.4°F (6-8°C) for sweet wines and 46.4-50°F (8-10°C) for dry Prosecco.

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  • Garda DOC Italian Wines

     

    GARDA DOC

    Pinot-bianco-lombardy-wineWine from Veneto bears the denomination of Garda Orientale DOC, that from Lombardy just carries Garda DOC. This Italian wine must be made from not less than 85% ofthe grapes indicated on the label. These are the well-known Pinot Bianco, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Riesling Italico, Riesling Renano, and Sauvignon Blanc. These are all excellent Italian wines. Drinking temperature for this Italian wine 46.4- 50.0°F (8-10°C) for Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Bianco, and Rieslings and 50-53.6°F (10-12°C) for Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio wines.

  • Gattinara - Italian Red Wine

    Gattinara DOCG

    The Nebblio grape is also the basis for Gattinara. This red wine originates from around Gattinara in the province of Vercelli.

    Gattinara has enjoyed great fame for centuries, despite its low levels of production. The wine's colour is dark granite red with an orange tinge. The bouquet is finer than that of either Barolo or Barbaresco and tends towards floral notes, such as violets. The taste is less pronounced than the two tough brethren from Piedmont but it remains very much a masculine wine that is full, well-balanced, and rich. In particular Gattinara has a characteristic bitter note in its finish that makes it a perfect companion for roast beef or game.

    An ordinary Gattinara must be at least three years old and contains at least 12.5% alcohol, a Riserva is at least four years old and contains 13% alcohol. In the best vintage years (with ample sun) a Gattinara will leave a Barolo far behind. Drinking temperature 57.2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C).

     

    BARBERA DOC

    There are three types of wine produced with the Barbera grape. All three are ruby red when young and granite red when mature. This wine is not suitable for drinking when young because it is so high in tannin. With a few years ageing in the bottle the wine becomes more full-bodied and more amenable. Choose the slightly more alcoholic Superiore version which is more balanced. Barbera d'Alba is only made with Barbera grapes but Barbera d'Asti and Barbera del Monferrato are permitted a maximum of 15% Preisa, Grignolino, or Dolcetto. In contrast with the other two, Barbera del Monferrato sometimes has a slight sweetness and a little carbonic acid to tingle the tongue. Drinking temperature 55.4-59°F (13- 15°C).

     

    DOLCETTO DOC

    Of all the wines made with Dolcetto grapes the best known is the Alba, although it is not necessarily the best. Dolcetto d' Alba is reddish purple and has a pleasant fruity nose and full flavour with a slight bitterness that is reminiscent of bay leaves. It is possible with most Dolcetto wines to choose a Superiore version, that has slightly higher alcohol.

    Drink this wine with any main dish of red meat, poultry, or roasted pork. Drinking temperature is 53.6-59°F (12- 15°C).

    The range of Dolcetto wines are: Dolcetto d'Acqui,Dolcetto d'Alba, Dolcetto d'Asti, Dolcetto delle Langhe Monregalesi, Dolcetto di Diano d' Alba, Dolcetto di Dogliani, and Dolcetto d'Ovada.

     

    FREISA DOC

    Preisa is a long established grape of Piedmont. The name coincidentally resembles the word fraise for strawberry (fragole in Italian) but this special red wine often tastes of strawberries and raspberries, with a hint too of roses. There are two Preisa DOC wines: those of Asti and the other from Chieri. Both are available as dry (secco) or sweet (amabile), still, lightly sparkling (frizzante), or naturally sparkling (spumante naturale) . This relic of the past must be tried if visiting Piedmont. Choose the better rather than cheaper varieties which are often unstable and continue to ferment in the bottle. Drinking temperature for dry Preisa is 50- 53.6°F (10- 12°C) , and 42.8-46.4°F (6- 8°C) for sweet and sparkling types.

     

    GAVI/CORTESE DI GAVI DOC

    These are a pair of the few white wines from Piedmont.  The popularity of Gavi or Cortese di Gavi surpasses its actual quality, although it is a good, fresh, delicate, and quite dry, available as frizzante and spumante with the Gavi label. These are excellent wines for drinking with fish. Drinking temperature 46.4-50°F (8- 10°C).

     

    GHEMME DOC

    This is one of the best red from northern Italy for quality and price. It does not achieve the standard of top Nebbiolo wines such as Barolo, Barbaresco, or Gattinara, but a good Ghemme costs significantly less and offers a great deal of pleasure in its drinking. The colour is deep granite red, the bouquet is intense and very pleasing and refined, with floral notes including violets. The wine is full of flavour, rounded, with a lightly bitterness in its finish.

    A good Ghemme needs to mature for at least four years before being sold. You are unlikely to be disappointed if you buy a Ghemme. Drinking temperature 57.2- 60.8°F (14- 16°C).

     

    MALVASIA DOC

    Two DOC wines are made from Malvasia in Piedmont: Malvasia di Casorzo d'Asti and Malvasia di Castelnuovo Don Bosco. Although from different varieties of Malvasia, the wines are similar.

     Both sweet red wines have a fruity nose and taste and often possess a light tingle of carbonic acid. They are especially popular for their relatively low alcohol content of 11- 12%. Drink at 46.4- 50°F (8- 10°C) .

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  • Generic Burgundy - French Wine

    Generic Burgundy

    Before we continue   our   journey south let us consider a few of the generic wines of Burgundy.

    BOURGOGNE

    White Bourgogn e AC (Chardonnay) is an aromatic, fresh white wine. Drink it at about 51.8°F (11°C)and preferably within two years of the harvest.

    Red BourgogneAC (Pinot Noir) is ruby red and has a nose of red fruit and wood land fruit (raspberry, blackcuriant, blackberry, and redcurrant). It is a lithe, generous, and friendly wine. Drink at about 60.8°F /16°C within five years of the harvest.

    burgundy WINE *** french WINE

    BOURGOGNE PASSE-TOUT-GRAIN

    The red French wine is made with a minimum of one third Pinot Noir to which Gamay grapes are added. The better wines though contain more Pinot Noir. It is a light, cheerful , and generous wine that should be drunk when young. For completeness, there is also a rosé variant.

    BOURGOGNE GRAND ORDINAIRE

    This appellation is rarely seen these days because it sounds too 'ordinary' for a Burgundy yet very acceptable whites, reds, and roses are to be found at a very reasonable price in this category.

    burgundy WINE *** french WINE

     

    BOUR GOGNE ALIGOTE

    This French white wine is very popular in Burgundy and much further afield. This very fresh wine is often strongly acidic and has a bouquet of green apple, lemon, and may blossom with the occasional hint of flint.{jcomments on}

  • Geneva Wine and Region

    Geneva Swiss Wine

    Geneva Wine FestGeneva is the third largest wine-producing canton of Switzerland after Valais and Vaud. The landscape around Geneva is much more gentle and less hilly than the other two main wine regions. The vineyards can therefore be larger and mechanisation is possible. This has no effect on quality but certainly on the price of the wine. The growers in the Geneva region have also been busy rationalising the processes and searching for the most suitable grape varieties for quality Swiss wines. The area is fairly flat with just the odd undulation but it is encircled by mountains which protect the vineyards against too much precipitation. The proximity of Lake Geneva (Lac Léman) also protects the vineyards against night frost during the growing and blossoming periods. Here too the underlying geology is fairly diverse.

  • Georgian wines

      Georgia, which is sandwiched between Russia and Turkey, produces a tremendous volume of good white, rose, red, and sparkling wines but these are rarely seen outside of the country.

    Some Georgian wines are unlikely to charm Western consumers because of their earthy tones and somewhat tart acidity. This results from the oldfashioned wine-making methods that are still in regular use in which entire bunches of grapes are left and more or less 'forgotten' for a time in earthenware pitchers to ferment. Georgian wines can easily be recognised by the decorative labels with at least six or seven gold medals on them on somewhat ungainly bottles.

    White wines are dominated by the two native grapes varieties of Rkatsiteli and Mtsvane. Several strange but high quality dry wines are made from these two types of grape. These are Tsinandali, Gurdzhaani, and Vazisubani.

    The equally excellent Napareuli wine is made solely from Rkatsiteli, and Manavi uses just Mtsvane. Tsitska, Tsolikauri, and Bakhtrioni are all made from native grape varieties of the same name. These wines and the Manavi and Vazisubani previously mentioned are all firm, fruity, and harmonious wines. Tsinandali, Gurdzhaani, Napareuli, and Manavi are all aged in wooden casks for at least three years.

    These wines are not truly fresh but they have marvellous fruitiness and a very elegant nose with a light and mellow fruity taste (by Georgian standards). Those who truly wish to try the authentic and very localised taste of old-fashioned Georgian wines (from earthenware pitchers) should try the Rkatsiteli, Sameba, or Tibaani. The colour of these dry white wines - made from pure Rkatsiteli in the case of the first and from Rkatsiteli and Mtsvani in the case of the others - is between dark yellow and amber. The bouquet is somewhat fruity, suggesting perhaps currants with clear sherry-like undertones. All these three wines are more alcoholic at 12-13% than the other white wines mentioned.

    Pull-bodied red wines are made here from Saperavi (Kvareli, Napareuli and Mukuzani) and Cabernet Sauvignon (Teliani). All these wines are cask aged for at least three years. These are not only full-bodied wines, they are also strong in tannin and have moderate levels of alcohol (12-12.5%) and fairly fruity with suggestions of overripe fruit and currants.

    Georgia also produces countless dry and sweet white, rose, and red sparkling wines. There are also reasonable to good fortified wines that are naturally sweet, made from grapes such as Rkatsiteli and Mtsvane. The Georgians themselves are not very fussy when it comes to the right wine for the dish being eaten.

     By Western standards the dry wines should be served at 50- 53.6°F (10-12°C), the dry reds at 60.8-62.6°F (16- 17°C), sweet reds at 50-53.6°F (10-12°C), and sparkling wines between 42.8°F (6°C) and 46.4°F (8°C).

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  • German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer wine

    Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    This widely known wine region stretches itself out along the Saar, Ruwer, and the Mosel rivers, from Saarburg by way of Trier to Koblenz.

    The vineyards are sited on steep slopes above the gently curving river Mosel, emanating a scene of timeless tranq uillity. The slopes chiefly consist of slate that is high in minerals, which is good for the wine's finesse. Admittedly not all the wines from this region are worthy of superlatives as unfortunately there are some very modest to almost undrinkable 'sugar' wines or lesser Mosels.

    The true Mosel wines are sensational with their rich nose, elegant character, and great class. Mosels come in a wide variety of styles from mellow, fruity, and amenable to more challenging, rich, and extremely aromatic. The best of them are undoubtedly the Rieslings, especially those from the famous wine villages of Bernkastel, Piesport, Wehlen, Brauneberg, Graach, Zeltingen, and Erden. Besides Riesling, Müller-Thurgau and the old-fashioned Elbling thrive here too.

     

    Ahr

    The Ahr is one of Germany's smallest wine regions. It is situated south of Bonn near Bad    NeuenahrAhrweiler. The rugged and impressive Ahr valley is a popular place for both nature lovers and walkers. Once the top of the Eifel has been reached, nothing tastes better than a cool glass of Portugieser red wine. The Ahr is after all a red wine area, although the volcanic origin of the soil, together with lots of slate makes it suitable for making first class whites too. The decision to make red wine though was rather more for economic than viticultural reasons.

    So many good white wines are made in Germany that the Ahr region, with a rather limited area available, decided there was more money to be made from planting blue grape varieties.

    German Baden Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe German wine region of Baden is in the south-east of Germany, forming a fairly long strip from the northern shore of the Bodensee by way of the famous Black Forest... Read more about German Baden Wine

    German Württemberg Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe vineyards of Württemberg are situated on hills above the Neckar and its tributaries. 

    Read more about German Württemberg Wine  

    German Rheingau Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe Rheingau is not only the geographical centre of the German wine industry, but also its historic centre.

    Read more about German Rheingau Wine 

    German Rheinpfalz Wine

    German Wine GrapesRheinpfalz is the most French of all the German wine regions.

    Read more about German Rheinpfalz Wine 

    {tab=    German Saxony Wine   }

    German Wine GrapesThis is one of the 'new' wine regions of Germany in the former East Germany. Together with the other 'new' region of Saale/ Unstruut they form the most northerly of the German wine areas.

    Read more about  German Saxony Wine 

     Two blue grape varieties, the Spatburgunder and Portugieser, yield velvet smooth, elegant, and fruity red wines here.

    These are complemented by Riesling and MüllerThurgau, which produce elegant, fresh, lively, and very aromatic wines.

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  • German Rheingau wine

    Rheingau

    The Rheingau is not only the geographical centre of the German wine industry, but also its historic centre.

    The relatively small region lies on the northern bank of the Rhine between Hocheim and Lorch. With the exception of the small Grosslagen of Daubhaus (north of Hocheim), Steil (near Assmannshausen), and Burgweg (near Lorch) the Rheingau forms one continuous area on the hills of the Taunus.

    The Rheingau is renowned for its wonderful landscape, its superlative wines, and its important role in Germany's history of wine. All the basisconcepts and terminology of present-day German wine law originated here. The first wines to be made from late harvested grapes were made here and also the first Trockenbeerenauslesen. Riesling thrives nowhere else as well as it does here on soil consisting of loess, loam, and weathered slate.

    Rheingau's celebrated Riesling is elegant, fruity, fresh, and of great class. The best wines often possess a firm, almost spicy character, and enough acidity to enable them to be kept for several years. In addition to the Riesling, the Rheingau is also world renowned for Spatburgunder wines from Assenhausen that are outstanding for a German red wine.

     

    Mittelrhein

    Four wine regions come together where the Nahe joins the Rhine: Nahe, Rheinhessen, Rheingau, and Mittelrhein. The last of these is an extended area from Bingen by way of Bacharach and Koblenz to the mouth of the Ahr, in the north of the region. The vineyards are sited on terraces on either side of the Rhine. The landscape is quite literally breathtaking.

    Wines from Mittelrhein need to be discovered locally. These wines are characteristic of their terroir, slate on the hills but more clay near the river. Riesling here is responsible for the best wines, which are elegant, fruity, and well structured, sometimes with quite high acidity. The Miiller-Thurgau and Kerner are more mellow but are also quite strongly acidic.

     

    Hessische Bergstrasse

    This region is relatively small and comprises a tongue of land between Heidelberg and Bensheim. The area is bounded by the Rhine in the west and the superb Odenwald in the east. The soil is almost exclusively loess, which is good for white wines. Here too little of the local production leaves the area.

     

    German Baden Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe German wine region of Baden is in the south-east of Germany, forming a fairly long strip from the northern shore of the Bodensee by way of the famous Black Forest... Read more about German Baden Wine

    German Württemberg Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe vineyards of Württemberg are situated on hills above the Neckar and its tributaries. 

    Read more about German Württemberg Wine  

    German Rheinpfalz Wine

    German Wine GrapesRheinpfalz is the most French of all the German wine regions.

    Read more about German Rheinpfalz Wine 

    German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Wine GrapesThis widely known wine region stretches itself out along the Saar, Ruwer, and the Mosel rivers, from Saarburg by way of Trier to Koblenz.. 

    Read more about German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Saxony Wine

    German Wine GrapesThis is one of the 'new' wine regions of Germany in the former East Germany. Together with the other 'new' region of Saale/ Unstruut they form the most northerly of the German wine areas.

    Read more about  German Saxony Wine 

     

    Riesling dominates here followed by the fragrant MüllerThurgau and subtle Silvaner (Sylvaner). Most wines are elegant and fruity with fine acidity. They are also very refreshing.

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  • German Rheinpfalz wine

    Rheinpfalz

    Rheinpfalz is the most French of all the German wine regions

    This region is the second largest in Germany in terms of area and the most productive. The best vineyards are in the north of the region, mainly around Wachenheim, Forst, Deidesheim, and Ruppertsberg, which is renowned for its superlative Riesling.

    In addition to powerful, full-bodied, aromatic, and elegant Rieslings, Rheinpfalz also produces a number of good whites made from Miiller-Thurgau, Kerner, Silvaner (Sylvaner), and Morio-Muskat. The rarer red wines from grapes such as Portugieser are mellow, mild, and fruity. Dornfelder grapes also yield excellent results.

     

    Rheinhessen

    This region, between Worms in the south and Mainz in the north is wedged between a loop of the Rhine and its tributary the Nahe. This is easily the largest wine area of Germany in terms of area of vineyards but second to Rheinpfalz in terms of production. The wines of Rheinhessen once enjoyed great fame, especially during the time of Charlemagne.

    Rheinhessen became famous at a stroke because of the excellent quality of the local wine from the vineyards surrounding the Liebfrau church of Worms. The wine, known as Liebfraumilch, used to be of extremely high quality but it is now permitted to be made in four areas: Rheinhessen, Rheinpfalz, Rheingau, and Nahe. Today's Liebfraumilch – of which the quality swings between reasonable and revoltingly sweet and shallow - unfortunately no longer has anything in common with the legendary wine. Rheinhessen soil consists of loess, chalk rock, and sand, offering great potential for inventive winemakers.

    The very best Rheinhessen wines undoubtedly come from the area around Nierstein, where the Riesling in particular delivers excellent results from the sunny terraces overlooking the Rhine. Riesling grapes here yield mild and fruity wines with a rounded and fulsome taste. Besides Riesling, there are also Miiller-Thurgau and Silvaner (Sylvaner) for white wines and Portugieser and Spatburgunder for reds.

    German Baden Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe German wine region of Baden is in the south-east of Germany, forming a fairly long strip from the northern shore of the Bodensee by way of the famous Black Forest... Read more about German Baden Wine

    German Württemberg Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe vineyards of Württemberg are situated on hills above the Neckar and its tributaries. 

    Read more about German Württemberg Wine  

    German Rheingau Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe Rheingau is not only the geographical centre of the German wine industry, but also its historic centre.

    Read more about German Rheingau Wine 

    German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Wine GrapesThis widely known wine region stretches itself out along the Saar, Ruwer, and the Mosel rivers, from Saarburg by way of Trier to Koblenz.. 

    Read more about German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Saxony Wine

    German Wine GrapesThis is one of the 'new' wine regions of Germany in the former East Germany. Together with the other 'new' region of Saale/ Unstruut they form the most northerly of the German wine areas.

    Read more about  German Saxony Wine 

    One of the finest German reds is the full and fruity classic Spatburgunder from the little village of Ingelheim, in the Grosslage Kaiserpfalz.{jcomments on}

  • German Saxony (Sachsen) Wine

    Saxony (Sachsen)

    This is one of the 'new' wine regions of Germany in the former East Germany. Together with the other 'new' region of Saale/ Unstruut they form the most northerly of the German wine areas.

    Sachsen is the furthest east along the banks of the Elbe, on either side of Dresden.

    It is a very small area with several scattered vineyards sited between Pillnitz and Diesbar Seusslitz, with the towns of Meissen and Radebeul at its centre. The soil of these vineyards is extremely varied (including sand, porphyry, and loam) . Müller-Thurgau, Weissburgunder, and Traminer produce dry and fruity wines here with a refreshing degree of acidity. The rare local wines are light and mellow and the Elbtal-Sekt is of very acceptable quality.

    Saalel Unstrut

    This small area to the south of Halle is the most northerly wine area of Germany and with the United  Kingdom, the most northerly of Europe. The severe continental climate forces the growers to harvest their grapes as early and quickly as possible. Pew sweet wines are therefore likely to be encountered, certainly no late harvested types. Most of them are dry and often pretty tart.

    White grapes particularly thrive on a soil of sandstone with plenty of fossilised shells, but the rare reds prove the potential ofthe area. Müller-Thurgau is undemanding and productive and here it successfully produces fresh vegetal wines with a pleasing fragrance of grapefruit. The Silvaner (Sylvaner) are better though, producing mellow and fresh wines with milder acidity and nose of citrus fruit.

    The best places are reserved for Riesling, which yield especially good results on chalk soils. The Riesling is fresh, powerful, full-bodied, with a characteristic nose of pear.

     

    German Baden Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe German wine region of Baden is in the south-east of Germany, forming a fairly long strip from the northern shore of the Bodensee by way of the famous Black Forest... Read more about German Baden Wine

    German Württemberg Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe vineyards of Württemberg are situated on hills above the Neckar and its tributaries. 

    Read more about German Württemberg Wine  

    German Rheingau Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe Rheingau is not only the geographical centre of the German wine industry, but also its historic centre.

    Read more about German Rheingau Wine 

    German Rheinpfalz Wine

    German Wine GrapesRheinpfalz is the most French of all the German wine regions.

    Read more about German Rheinpfalz Wine 

    German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Wine GrapesThis widely known wine region stretches itself out along the Saar, Ruwer, and the Mosel rivers, from Saarburg by way of Trier to Koblenz.. 

    Read more about German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

     Other grapes such as Weissburgunder (green apple) and Traminer (mellow and rounded) , yield reasonable wines for easy and early drinking. Portugieser reds have a seductive scent of raspberry but are often a bit too rigid.

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  • German Wine

       Some of the greatest white wines in the world come from Germany. When made from the Riesling grape, by a well-respcted grower, German wines can be extremly complex and deliver immense satisfaction.

     The cool climate is just one the factors explaining why German wines are some of the most difficult to make. Several of the vineyards lie at the northen limit for wine production. Nonetheless, in good years the grapes ripen slowly and can provide a wonderful balance between fruit and acidity. Winemaking was introduced to the region by the Romans who observed where the snow first melted, indicating where grapes might succesfully ripen.

    Germany Wineyards A grading system evolved, which linked quality to grape ripeness, rather then vineyard location. This notion has been challenged by several respected grawers, who argue that precise location is equally important. Traditionally, QMP wines, are made without chaptalisation and are categorised depending on the degree of natural grape sugar at the time of harvest.

     The categories are as follows:

    KABINETT: very light and perfect as an apertif.

    SPÄTLESE: much sweeter, with some noble rot apparent in some cases.

    BERENAUSLESE: rich, intense, sweet wines.

    TROCHENBEERENAUSLESE: made form individual handpicked verries, 100 per cent noble rot. The richest wines, at best balanced with crisp acidity,

    EISWEIN: picked at BERENAUSLESE ripeness or above when frozen. Sweet, intense and with pinpoint acidity.

     

    German regions for winemakers

     Tow new generic labelling terms have been introduced: ‘Classic’ and ‘Selection’. Linked to dry wines made from traditional grapes, ‘selection’ indicates that the wine cames from an individual wineyard in one specific region. Germany’s wine regions of note include Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Rheingau, Nahe and Pfalz. The steep, south-facing vineyards of Mosel-Saar-Ruwer overlook the River Mosel and its triburaries, the Saar and the Ruwer. Skate siuk us important here. Mosel wines,traditionally sold in tall, green bettles, are pale in colour, light in body, with racy acidity and elegance.

     Rheingau wines are fuller in style, with the river Rhine being influential. The wineyards, such as the Rudesheimer Berg, are also angled steeply. Halfway in style between a Mosel and Rhein, Nahe wines are fresh, clean and sometimes ‘minerally’. Wines from the Pfalz region are growing in popularity. Pfalz haz the warmest climate of Germany’s wine-growing regins and is home to some of Germany’s most innovative winemakers and some exciting wines. Certain wines, such as those from the Lingenfleder estate, exce. However, Pfalz is also home to a great deal of Liefraumilch production.

     

      Top-quality estate wines from Germany once fetched higher prices than firt-growth Bordeaux! {jcomments on}

  • German Wine

    More about German Wine

     Germany takes sixth place among the wineproducing nations of the world. Much of the production is intended for export, while Germany itself imports huge volumes of wine. This demonstrates the complexity of the German position. It seems as though the best German wines – but unfortunately also some of the worst - disappear into export markets while the Germans themselves tend to prefer beer or imported wines.

    Compared with a country like France, the consumption of wine in Germany is quite low. Changes are also apparent though in Germany. Although the German government has always maintained that the German system of wine control was watertight and the best in Europe, in reality things were sometimes not right with the cheaper German wines.

    Some wine traders were clearly more interested in quick profits than being ambassadors for the German wine industry. Creations with names such as 'Alte Wein Tradition' and 'Kellergeister' have done much to damage the reputation of German wines. On the other hand with the absurd prices of Bordeaux wines, in particular those of Sauternes, increasing numbers of people have been looking for cheaper alternatives. These can be found in Germany at prices that are quite attractive.

    The demand for good quality but affordable German wine has increased in the past decade or so. The demand for dry German wines has also grown explosively. Most of the growers were quickly able to adapt themselves to the market situation. Growers constantly seek to find ways to guarantee the wine's quality while keeping the prices acceptable for everyone.

    About German Wine...

  • German wine-growing and regions

    German Wine-growing

    German WinesAlthough a few wine-makers succeed in making excellent red wines, German is white wine country, because of its climate. Although the quality of red German wines has improved, the price charged for the level of quality available is somewhat on the high side. Slightly more than 85% of the area cultivated by vines in Germany is planted with white grape varieties. Before the reunification of Germany the proportion of red wine grapes had risen sharply from 13% in 1984 to almost 19% in 1994. Because the winegrowing areas of the former East Germany mainly grew white varieties, the proportion has now decreased slightly. The choice of grapes grown has also shifted in favour of better quality. Hence the very productive MüllerThurgau is losing ground in favour of Riesling.

  • German Württemberg Wine

    Württemberg

    The vineyards of Württemberg are situated on hills above the Neckar and its tributaries.

    The area starts near Tübingen and continues past the provincial capital of Stuttgart to Heilbronn and Bad Mergentheim. Württemberg is Germany's largest wine-growing region as far as red wine is concerned. About half the vineyards are planted with blue grape varieties.

    The soil here consists of sedimentary layers, chalk rock with fossilised shells, marl, and loess. Unfortunately the fine wines from this area almost never leave their area of production. Very fruity reds

    are made from Müllerebe, Spatburgunder, Portugieser, and Lemberger, while sturdy, powerful, and often slightly rustic whites are made from Riesling, Müller-Thurgau, Kerner, and Silvaner (Sylvaner) .

    Franconia (Franken)

    The vineyards of Franconia are on the hills overlooking the river Main as it runs through Würzburg and Aschaffenburg. The soil mainly consists of loess, sandstone, and chalk rock. Franconia has been renowned for centuries for two things: the Steinwein from Würzburg, which is so popular that all the wines from the region bear the Stein name, and the idiosyncratic but awkward green Bocksbeutel flagonshaped bottles. The shape makes them awkward to stack in wine racks intended for round bottles.

    Franconian wines are mainly produced from MüllerThurgau and Silvaner (Sylvaner) which yield very dry and sturdy wines with good acidity and fullbodied structure.

    Nahe

    Nahe lies to the west of Rheinhessen on either side of the river of that name. The soil in the north around Bad Kreuznach consists of loam and sand, while in the south it tends towards quartzite and porphyry. 

    German Baden Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe German wine region of Baden is in the south-east of Germany, forming a fairly long strip from the northern shore of the Bodensee by way of the famous Black Forest... Read more about German Baden Wine

     

    German Rheingau Wine

    German Wine GrapesThe Rheingau is not only the geographical centre of the German wine industry, but also its historic centre.

    Read more about German Rheingau Wine 

    German Rheinpfalz Wine

    German Wine GrapesRheinpfalz is the most French of all the German wine regions.

    Read more about German Rheinpfalz Wine 

    German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Wine GrapesThis widely known wine region stretches itself out along the Saar, Ruwer, and the Mosel rivers, from Saarburg by way of Trier to Koblenz.. 

    Read more about German Mosel-Saar-Ruwer

    German Saxony Wine

    German Wine GrapesThis is one of the 'new' wine regions of Germany in the former East Germany. Together with the other 'new' region of Saale/ Unstruut they form the most northerly of the German wine areas.

    Read more about  German Saxony Wine 

     Nahe bridges the gap in wine terms between the fragrant wines of the Mosel, the elegant ones from the Rheingau, and the milder ones of Rheinhessen. Miiller-Thurgau, Riesling, and Silvaner (Sylvaner) here deliver subtle and fragrant wines.

    {jcomments on}