The soil in this region tends to be slate and rock, with some volcanic stone found in the middle Ahr Valley. Baden is the southernmost of Germany's wine regions, a long, slim strip that extends from near Heidelberg in the north to Lake Constance (Bodensee) in the south. Saale-Unstrut is a small and humble, traditional wine region that’s gaining some serious traction across Europe. St James’ Mill, Whitefriars, Norwich. History lovers and wine enthusiasts unite in this key appellation filled with ancient Roman castles and monasteries. Rheingau has a fairly moderate climate, with warm summers and mild winters. Credit: debyaho/Getty Images . Franken’s climate is continental with a Mediterranean influence. Known for its steep slopes overlooking Mosel River, this is Germany’s third largest wine producing appellation. Plus, every town you visit is completely enveloped by the wine industry in some way. Germany now produces nearly 67% white wine and 33% red wine, in regions extending from the Elbe to Lake Constance. An ideal complement to many dishes, German Riesling is widely considered to be the most food-friendly white wine in the world. The slate soils not only add minerality to the grapes, they also retain heat from the sun at night. The ability to grow grapes with such naturally high sweetness and acidity is also ideal for sparkling wine, referred to in Germany as Sekt. Nahe is another big player when it comes to the mighty Riesling, with 75% of all vines across the region growing the celebrated variety. Vinexpo is one of the most important trade forums for the world's wine markets, including Germany, which will once again demonstrate the international competitiveness of its wine-growers at this year's trade fair. The traditional style of German Spätburgunder is lighter in colour, body and tannic acidity than its counterparts from warmer climates. The Spanish brought the Mission grape to Mexico and Chile. It is also the warmest. German Pinot Noir: the Style of Spätburgunder German Pinot Noir is a grotesque and ghastly wine that tastes akin to a defective, sweet, faded, diluted red Burgundy from an incompetent producer. Every month, our 5 to Try series showcases five examples of stellar wines from varying wine styles, grapes, and Germany’s 13 winegrowing regions. German pinot noirs start around $13 and are perfect to drink right when the sun bursts through the clouds. Wines made in this region are also shaped by the Elbe, as its weathered granite soils and geological makeup influence the grapes. Riesling is the top white grape variety in the small but mighty Ahr region. By the way, Loess is same soil type found in the Columbia Valley in Washington and Oregon. Make way for the young, dynamic winemakers of Germany! When fine Pinot Noir speaks German: Spätburgunder What has happened to German Spätburgunder over the past 30 years is nothing short of miraculous. They are also a stock-in-trade in and around the Kaiserstuhl, a defunct volcano on Baden. Dating back to the 1300s, the best vineyards here are planted on steep, fossil-laden, chalky slopes, enabling winemakers to grow the highest quality vines. Loamy, granite soils here are ideal for Riesling, producing grapes that are rich in fruity, citrus notes. The steep vineyard-covered slopes of Mittelrhein have clayish slate soils that are perfect for white grape varieties (85% of all vines are white grapes to be exact!). The great pinot noirs (aka Spatburgunder) from Germany hail from a region called the Ahr, which is warmer than other wine regions in Germany and able to ripen pinot with plum-like flavors, earth and fruit. Every other German region is in chilly Zone A. Baden is, unusually for Germany, best known for its red wines, However its whites account for the majority of its output. Riesling and Pinot Noir being the most recognised names. Baden is the third largest wine region in Germany. The best are produced in the northerly Ahr region, near the Cold War capital Bonn, where they can be enchantingly delicate and floral. What struck me the most here was how pure and silky the tannins are, it is a soft, gentle, enticing Pinot that is so ready to drink and moreish – the perfect Pinot Noir for consuming straight away. German pinot noirs start around $13 and are perfect to … The first vines in Mosel were planted by the Romans, with Germany’s most famous variety, Riesling, first being planted in the Middle Ages. Yet Spätburgunder still confuses drinkers, and it’s not surprising: German Pinot Noir thrives across four degrees of latitude, from 48°N in Baden to 51°N in Saxony (to compare, Beaune in Burgundy is at 47.0°N, Reims at 49.2°N ); in all of Germany’s 13 wine regions; and in every imaginable soil. Ranging from ruby to garnet red, Pinot Noir wines are slightly tannic, mild in acidity, and have a long finish with aromas reminiscent of blackberry and cherry. Pinot noir wines are produced in Neuchâtel, Schaffhausen, Zürich, St. Gallen and Bündner Herrschaft. Why? This warmth allows black grapes to thrive, producing flavoursome red wines with an acidic character. Wines here tend to be have a high alcohol content – be warned! Founded in 1868, Mayschoss-Altenahr is Germany’s oldest wine cooperative. NR3 1TN. Wines here tend to be dry and full bodied, with delicate fruit flavours and earthy undertones. This placed Germany 14th in the world. German wine. Many contemporary winemakers, however, are producing wines that are more international in style, i.e. Germany’s largest wine region, and a hot spot for the young, dynamic producers making their mark on the German wine industry. By now it is abundantly clear what a natural home for Pinot Noir Germany’s various regions are. What may come as a surprise to many is that Germany is the world’s third largest producer of Pinot Noir, and with thirteen wine regions in Germany there is … It has a cool, wet climate that allows for long, slow ripening seasons, resulting in characterful, food-friendly vinos with pronounced flavours and high acidity. Germany – famous primarily for the world-class Riesling produced in its Mosel region – is entering a new stage of its wine history. Rich in tradition, Rheingau is one of Germany’s most distinguished wine regions. I throw words at the walls of Wine Folly’s channels until something sticks, like a fistful of verbal spaghetti. Pinot gris, pinot grigio or Grauburgunder is a white wine grape variety of the species Vitis vinifera.Thought to be a mutant clone of the pinot noir variety, it normally has a grayish-blue fruit, accounting for its name but the grapes can have a brownish pink to black and even white appearance. Tricky as this varietal may be to grow and nurture into great wine, pinot noir (or “spatburgunder” as it is known in Germany) is the grape they all want to grow, from southern Baden up to northern Ahr region. Baden is the southernmost of Germany's 13 official wine regions. Pinot Noir Regions Around the World The French Connection While Vitis vinifera, the genus of grapevines from which fine wine comes, originated in Europe, these vines did not exist in the Americas. Bernhard Huber was seen as the German godfather of Pinot Noir and was one of the most instrumental vignerons to improve the region's reputation for the varietal. The expertise across all Germany's picturesque winemaking regions is second to none at every level. In the United States, Ahr Valley Spätburgunders are pretty difficult to find, but not impossible. Virgin Wine Online Ltd. The warmth created by the soil and landscape create a perfect hotspot for black grapes, and fruitful red varieties such as Portugieser really thrive here. In Valais, Pinot noir is also blended with Gamay to produce the well known Dôle. The Ahr Valley is one of those wine regions you’ll never hear about unless you dig. Igneous, sandstone, clay, limestone, slate. It’s known for turning out Germany’s most famous varieties, including Pinot Noir and Rivaner, and naturally sweet grapes such as spicy Gewürztraminer, Muscat, and Scheurebe also do well here thanks to the warm temperatures. I also write plays, jokes, and the occasional diatribe. Granite, sand, loess-loam, porphyry-quartz. Nahe Riesling has a light spiciness and smooth finish, while Silvaner grown in the flatter foothills is floral and fragrant. When you think of German wine, it’s common to think of Riesling. Silky, fruit-forward and food-friendly, this comes as no surprise. Key grape varieties here are the usual suspects – Pinot Noir and Riesling, with a bit of Silvaner and Gutedel too. This breath-taking region benefits from ample sunshine and moderate temperatures, largely helped by the vast, heat-reflecting surface of the river Rhine. Cold winters, high rainfall, and early morning frosts result in beautiful late-ripening Riesling, although the main white grape variety here is Silvaner. It is aged in large German oak barrels (called shtucks ) for 15 months. Covering just 462 hectares, it’s one of Germany’s smaller wine growing areas, yet cultivates an impressive array of grape varieties. By far the longest German wine region, Baden runs along the bank of the river Rhine, producing an impressive variety of flavoursome full-bodied wines throughout its nine individual districts. This is the German name for Pinot Madeleine, a more elegant cousin of Pinot Noir that ripens early but with crazy low yields! With 66.9% of Germany’s vineyards dedicated to producing knock-out white wine, and 11.5% to Pinot Noir, it’s never been a more exciting time for German wine production. Still, the Ahr Valley is only composed of about 1380 acres (560 hectares) of vineyards, with 65% dedicated to Pinot Noir. With over 15,000 hectares of vines, this is the third largest wine region in Germany. – Robert Parker, 2002. The winter months can be harsh, so vineyards are planted between the hills of the river to shelter the crops from strong gusts of wind. The expertise across all Germany's picturesque winemaking regions is second to none at every level. But there’s evidence that climate change is pulling new regions into the Pinot Noir sweet spot. You’re surrounded on all sides by steep, vineyard-wrapped mountains, some reaching over 2,000 feet (600 meters). Some areas, such as the Moselle, Saar and Ruwer, are almost exclusively dedicated to white grape varieties. Yet Spätburgunder still confuses drinkers, and it’s not surprising: German Pinot Noir thrives across four degrees of latitude, from 48°N in Baden to 51°N in Saxony (to compare, Beaune in Burgundy is at 47.0°N, Reims at 49.2°N ); in all of Germany’s 13 wine regions; and in … These are often made in oaked styles. Germany’s wine regions . Keep an eye out for these years while you’re on the lookout for Ahr Valley Pinot Noir: Here are a few standout wineries worth investigating further: An impressive family-run operation, the quality of the wines made at Meyer-Näkel has caught the eye (and tastebuds) of more than a few wine experts. Called Pinot Noir in France, this grape produces elegant, velvety wines with a distinctive bouquet reminiscent of bitter almonds or blackberries. Even Oregon Pinot Noir that is not aged in oak barrels will have a lot of body and tannins. Finally, Germany is honing its very own Pinot identity. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Loam allows pockets of air and water to sit between its particles, which vine roots feed on and thrive. Württemberg experiences mild temperatures thanks to the protective Black Forest canopy and sunlight bouncing off the surface of the Neckar River. Check with your local wine shops, though: you never know who might have a connection. Look for the classically styled wines from Schloss Johannisberg, one of the world's oldest Riesling producers with its fine pedigree and reputation. The wine, commonly known as Spätburgunder in Germany, comes mainly from its Pfalz, Nahe, Rheinhessen, and Baden regions. The high acidity combines with oak tannins to add layers of complexity over time. A cooler climate with rugged soils requires that the best vineyards tend to be on southern-facing slopes (to catch the sun). What happened in the past decade is a game-changer. Fun Find: The Ahr is home to Frühburgunder. Alluvial, sandstone, rock, shell-limestone. Meunier translates from the French as “miller” (with the leaves having a flour-like dusting on them), and presumably its similarity to pinot noir inspired the reference to pinot noir’s prime home of Burgundy. Heat and sunshine reflects off the surface of the river Rhine and onto the surrounding vineyards, while the forest-capped Taunus Hills shelter the vines below from harsh winds. Riesling, Rivaner, Pinot Blanc, Goldriesling. Smaller but well known plantings are also in Pfalz, Rheingau and other regions. Baden wine region - kissed by the sun. Soils also vary hugely here, from exceptionally fertile volcanic igneous rock, to heat-retaining slate and nutrient-rich clay. There’s also a definite earthiness beneath it all, described by some as mushrooms or damp leaves. Eiswein, otherwise known as Ice Wine, is the most exclusive of all wine styles, and is popular internationally as a rarity and a specialty. This 22 mile (35 km) trail travels through the exact hills and vineyards that make Ahr so memorable. Today, a new generation of ambitious winemakers, who have traveled the world in search of inspiration, are not only turning out some of the finest dry white wines you’ll find on the planet, but also exquisite Pinot Noirs and crisp sparkling wines. Producing outstanding wines, from both old grape varieties and new, it’s a region that should be on every wine enthusiast’s radar. The ice crystals break away when the grapes are crushed, leaving juice with a super high concentration of sugar for mouth-wateringly rich dessert wine! This sweetness is balanced with a minerality and high acidity that’s become the trademark of Mosel wines. Baden is the third largest wine region in Germany. There is also a brilliant-value Pinot Blanc from Vom Löss that we've introduced. Known as ‘Germany’s Spring Garden’, the Hessische Bergstrasse region is beautiful and full of life. Working extensively with massal selection of clones, 10 – 15 different Pinot clones exist within one vineyard. Guntrum’s Pinot Noir 2016 is a really impressive gateway wine into the world of German Pinot Noir. Looking for Ahr Spätburgunder? 40 percent of Baden vineyards are planted with red wine grapes – mostly pinot noir – and these account for more than half of all German pinot noir production. But viable alternatives exist in a few European wine regions. Even if it is rarely as sumptuous as the greatest reds from the Côte de Nuits in Burgundy, German Pinot Noir can be exquisite. Being one of Germany’s warmest regions, Mediterranean fruits common in Italy, such as lemons and figs, grow in Pfalz. Looking for more info on German wine regions? The first thing you’ll notice about an Ahr Spätburgunder is the color. Distinct Oregon Pinot Noir Growing Conditions. Pinot Blanc and Pinot Noir are other notable varieties from this region, although Rheinhessen is perhaps best known for having the largest planting in the world of the ancient grape variety, Silvaner. Of course, climate change was a decisive factor, but what has really changed is the way Germany’s winemakers now approach their work. If you didn’t know (honestly, most of us don’t), Germany is the 3rd largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. But climate change has made it easier for pinot noir to ripen, and not just in Baden, the southernmost German wine region and long the leading producer of German … Its fertility and warmth allow wines to display rounder, fruit forward notes, with less acidity. Such frosty conditions freeze the water content of the grape. Running along the Rhine, Baden stretches 400km through the Black Forest and across the volcanic mountains of Kaiserstuhl. The grapes that produce this exceptional wine must be harvested at temperatures of -7°C or below. The benchmark for Pinot Noir, Burgundy reigns supreme. Mayschoss-Altenahr: Cradle of Wine-growers' Cooperatives, Jancis Robinson's thoughts on Meyer-Näkel, Germany Wine (official 2018 vintage notes), Germany WIne (official 2015 vintage notes). What pinot meunier tastes like. Grapes come in from all over the region producing a wide variety of regional wines (60% of them Spätburgunder). Soils typically contain shell-limestone, meaning they’re rich in calcium and have incredible water retention for growing thirsty vines. Outstanding Riesling grows on the quaint forested valley hills that are reminiscent of Switzerland. Where most New World Pinot tends toward a light to medium ruby color, Ahr wines are garnet, leaning towards a rusty orange. Distinctly old world in style, these wines from slate and limestone, sandstone and Keuper add nuance to the world Pinot-Pantheon. Yet the valleys of the Elbe River help to soften temperatures, creating moments of warmth and a continental feel. Try visiting online stores, or check with your local wine shop about their availability. The Baden wine region is well known for its remarkable wines. From light, red fruit flavoured vinos to darker, full-bodied ruby reds, Württemberg has proven itself to be a favourite for those who prefer black grape varieties. Riesling and Pinot Noir being the most recognised names. Protected by the Odenwald Hills and the Black Forest on one side and the Vosges mountains on the other, it enjoys a warm and sunny climate which is almost Mediterranean. For every acre of Riesling (the dominant variety in almost every other German region), there are five of Pinot Noir. The benchmark for Pinot Noir, Burgundy reigns supreme. German Pinot Noir (also known as Spätburgunder) Germany ranks 3rd as the largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. German Pinot Noir (also known as Spätburgunder) Germany ranks 3rd as the largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. This appellation is one of the most northerly in the whole of Europe, meaning it experiences cooler temperatures than other parts of Germany. Some areas, such as the Moselle, Saar and Ruwer, are almost exclusively dedicated to white grape varieties. Although Riesling still holds its own as their biggest white grape variety, black grapes garner most of the limelight with almost 70% of all wines being red. Either way, the Ahr River Valley is a serious Pinot Noir hotspot. The style and complexity of Silvaner from this region is undeniably hard to beat. Many of the wineries here offer rooms, similar to what we think of as a Bed & Breakfasts in the States. Perhaps it’s because the Germans don’t want to share, or maybe it’s because Burgundy doesn’t like the competition next door. Spätburgunder generally lacks the big, jammy aspects that one often finds in warmer climate Pinot Noir. Rheinhessen sits on the west bank of the Rhine, and is often referred to as the “land of a thousand hills”. Of course, around here they called it Spätburgunder. Either way, the Ahr River Valley is a serious Pinot Noir hotspot. Steep vineyards on Rüdesheimer Berg overlooking river Rhine. In the early 21st Century, the country's winemakers are proving convincingly that they are good for more than just Mosel Riesling. © Virgin Wines 2020 All rights reserved. The remaining 60 percent of Baden vineyards are allocated to white wine grapes such as riesling and müller-thurgau grapes, while chasselas is a Badensian speciality. In German-speaking regions of Switzerland it is often called Blauburgunder. You’re surrounded on all sides by steep, vineyard-wrapped mountains, some reaching over 2,000 feet (600 meters). It’s visually gobsmacking. Though Riesling is undoubtedly the queen of German wines, the country’s 13 wine-producing regions produce a host of other whites and reds as well, ranging from fruity to spicy, dry to sweet, after-dinner specialties to versatile ones. Here are some common label terms to know on Ahr wines: While most Ahr Valley Spätburgunder is drunk young, the higher quality levels age for 10+ years. Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) Germany’s most heralded red grape is one of the most popular worldwide: Pinot Noir, or Spätburgunder, as it’s known locally. These vineyards are planted with Riesling grapes, with some Spätburgunder (Pinot noir), and produce some of … Second only to Mosel in its Riesling plantings, this key wine producing appellation is home to around 10,000 vine growers. Since Pinot Noir loves warm spots in cooler climates, Germany is eminently suited to growing it – and there are delicious wines in every region. Slate is essential for viticulture in this region as it retains heat from the sun, while the volcanic ash holds water. Either way, the Ahr River Valley is a serious Pinot Noir hotspot. In the case of red wine varieties, Pinot Noir and Dornfeld cultivation are of the greatest importance. Vineyards range in altitude from flat plains in the east to steep slopes in the west. Company No: 03800762, Tel: 0343 224 1001 In the case of red wine varieties, Pinot Noir and Dornfeld cultivation are of the greatest importance.Germany now produces nearly 67% white wine and 33% red wine, in regions extending from the Elbe to Lake Constance. One of the only other places on earth that have near-perfect growing conditions for Pinot Noir is France. A rural region neighbouring the famous Baden appellation, Württemberg stands out from the crowd for being one of the few German regions where red wines dominate. In Germany, where wine preferences have long been swinging dry and drier still, the market is dominated by trocken, or dry wines made from Riesling, Pinot Noir (known as … This is something that no Pinot-lover should miss. This water remains i Three such regions include … For example, fine German Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) is now emerging from various regions, particularly Baden, Pfalz and even the tiny Ahr Valley. In contrast, regions in the south, such as Württemberg and … Guntrum’s Pinot Noir 2016 is a really impressive gateway wine into the world of German Pinot Noir. But viable alternatives exist in a few European wine regions. World famous as the homeland of Riesling, Germany is enjoying a new era of quality winemaking, and is so much more than a country that just produces sweet wines. 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