Make way for the young, dynamic winemakers of Germany! It is aged in large German oak barrels (called shtucks ) for 15 months. Nahe is another big player when it comes to the mighty Riesling, with 75% of all vines across the region growing the celebrated variety. Eastern Ahr: The eastern Ahr Valley is lower in elevation than the west, and known for its Loess, a silty soil that retains heat and water well, while still allowing for proper drainage. German Pinot Noir in Bordeaux Country. But viable alternatives exist in a few European wine regions. 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. Sloping sites and warm soils enable vines to penetrate the soil for up to 27 feet, which is why Riesling from this region can have such a strong mineral nuance. Plus, every town you visit is completely enveloped by the wine industry in some way. Outstanding Riesling grows on the quaint forested valley hills that are reminiscent of Switzerland. Baden wine region - kissed by the sun. The word pinot could have been given to it because the grapes grow in small pine cone-shaped clusters. (Germany Vineyards photo credit Wolfgang Staudt) Referred to as “red wine paradise”, this area is one of Germany’s most northerly 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. German wine - wine regions . Pinot Noir Growing Regions California has many established wine-growing regions for Pinot Noir, such as Russian River Valley, Carneros and Santa Barbara. The remaining 60 percent of Baden vineyards are allocated to white w… Pinot Noir is one of the UK’s most popular red wines. Granite, sand, loess-loam, porphyry-quartz. 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. 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. In contrast, regions in the south, such as Württemberg and … Since Pinot Noir loves warm spots in cooler climates, Germany is eminently suited to growing it – and there are delicious wines in every region. The riverside valleys have a range of microclimates, allowing winemakers in this appellation to plant a diverse variety of grape types. 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). Key grape varieties here are the usual suspects – Pinot Noir and Riesling, with a bit of Silvaner and Gutedel too. 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. Its relatively sunny, dry climate permits the production of good-quality Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) and ripe, relatively full-bodied examples of Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris) and Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc). And, it’s a bit different from the Pinot most of us know. In German-speaking regions of Switzerland it is often called Blauburgunder. Grapes come in from all over the region producing a wide variety of regional wines (60% of them Spätburgunder). With over 15,000 hectares of vines, this is the third largest wine region in Germany. Württemberg experiences mild temperatures thanks to the protective Black Forest canopy and sunlight bouncing off the surface of the Neckar River. German pinot noirs start around $13 and are perfect to drink right when the sun bursts through the clouds. By now it is abundantly clear what a natural home for Pinot Noir Germany’s various regions are. With 2,000 years of viticulture under its belt, Germany has become a leader in winemaking technology and meticulous vineyard work. Key grape varieties here are the usual suspects – Pinot Noir and Riesling, with a bit of Silvaner and Gutedel too. The Pinot (Burgunder) family is widely planted in Germany, particularly the red wine grape Pinot Noir (Spätburgunder), the third most widely planted varietal in the country and the most widely planted grape in Baden and the Ahr. Running along the Rhine, Baden stretches 400km through the Black Forest and across the volcanic mountains of Kaiserstuhl. Many contemporary winemakers, however, are producing wines that are more international in style, i.e. Like most of Germany, this famous appellation is home to idyllic steep sloping vineyards covering a range of soil types, meaning those ambitious new generation winemakers have a lot to play with. Second only to Mosel in its Riesling plantings, this key wine producing appellation is home to around 10,000 vine growers. The benchmark for Pinot Noir, Burgundy reigns supreme. Germany is home to nearly 135 different grape varieties, from lesser-known varieties such as Albalonga and Zweigeltrebe to well-known favourites such as Riesling and Pinot Noir. Credit: debyaho/Getty Images . Why? For many of us, the end of 2020 couldn’t come soon enough. When fine Pinot Noir speaks German: Spätburgunder What has happened to German Spätburgunder over the past 30 years is nothing short of miraculous. What pinot meunier tastes like. This mountainous area with its rolling hills produces some absolutely beautiful wines, including the Pinots (Blanc, Gris and Noir) and Silvaner, although it can be difficult to get your hands on a bottle outside of Germany. 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. Neighbour to Switzerland and Alsace in France, Baden is Germany’s southernmost region, and its warmest. Orchards, and almond and cherry trees blossom here, along with grapevines. Keep an eye out for their “Surprise” Blanc de Noirs (a white Pinot), which adds a little pink to the mix, giving it a brilliant, copper color. Riesling, Rivaner, Pinot Blanc, Goldriesling. Derived from the Latin word for ‘palace’, Pfalz is a scenic wine region with a peaceful landscape. Loam soil is typical of this area, which is renowned for being fantastic for plant growth – no wonder winemakers in this iconic German region produce such high quality wines! 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 … 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. Franken may be one of Germany’s smaller wine regions, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in quality. Read more about German Pinot Noir and find top recommendations in the November 2017 issue of Decanter. Spätburgunder generally lacks the big, jammy aspects that one often finds in warmer climate Pinot Noir. Virgin Wine Online Ltd. Dry, slightly tannic, and mild in acidity, full-bodied with flavors and aromas of red berries, subtle earthy notes, and a long finish. Saale-Unstrut is a small and humble, traditional wine region that’s gaining some serious traction across Europe. Hiking and biking are hugely popular, especially along the Rotweinwanderweg (Red Wine Trail). Mittelrhein is the quintessential German fairy tale region. The river at the heart of the Nahe region creates a moderate climate for grape cultivation. Still, the Ahr Valley is only composed of about 1380 acres (560 hectares) of vineyards, with 65% dedicated to Pinot Noir. Most wines produced here are dry, including varieties such as Pinot Gris and Blanc, although Hessische Bergstrasse also takes full advantage of its cool climate by making a lot of delicious sweet Eiswein too (see How Is Sweet Wine Made for more info). 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. But there’s evidence that climate change is pulling new regions into the Pinot Noir sweet spot. Vineyards range in altitude from flat plains in the east to steep slopes in the west. Riesling and Pinot Noir being the most recognised names. There is also a brilliant-value Pinot Blanc from Vom Löss that we've introduced. This water remains i The difference between wine and great wine comes down to the terroir, and the Ahr Valley does wonders with Pinot Noir. Called Pinot Noir in France, this grape produces elegant, velvety wines with a distinctive bouquet reminiscent of bitter almonds or blackberries. German Pinot Noir (also known as Spätburgunder) Germany ranks 3rd as the largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. A cooler climate with rugged soils requires that the best vineyards tend to be on southern-facing slopes (to catch the sun). I throw words at the walls of Wine Folly’s channels until something sticks, like a fistful of verbal spaghetti. The expertise across all Germany's picturesque winemaking regions is second to none at every level. © Virgin Wines 2020 All rights reserved. Distinctly old world in style, these wines from slate and limestone, sandstone and Keuper add nuance to the world Pinot-Pantheon. Baden is the third largest wine region in Germany. 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. Alluvial, sandstone, rock, shell-limestone. Three such regions include … This charming region is one of Germany’s cooler wine growing areas. They are also a stock-in-trade in and around the Kaiserstuhl, a defunct volcano on Baden. These were high-end pinot noirs, which, if they were available in the United States, might retail for $70 to $140. As of 2017 the country boasted around 102,000 hectares (252,000 acres) of vineyards. 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. 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. Being one of Germany’s warmest regions, Mediterranean fruits common in Italy, such as lemons and figs, grow in Pfalz. Loess-loam, limestone, sand, gravel, clay. Top quality German Spätburgunder is now emerging from various regions, particularly Baden, Pfalz and even the tiny Ahr Valley. Slate is essential for viticulture in this region as it retains heat from the sun, while the volcanic ash holds water. The high acidity combines with oak tannins to add layers of complexity over time. There is also a brilliant-value Pinot Blanc from Vom Löss that we've introduced. The wine, commonly known as Spätburgunder in Germany, comes mainly from its Pfalz, Nahe, Rheinhessen, and Baden regions. Rheinhessen sits on the west bank of the Rhine, and is often referred to as the “land of a thousand hills”. But, unlike most of Germany, this area is actually more known for its reds. Germany – famous primarily for the world-class Riesling produced in its Mosel region – is entering a new stage of its wine history. If you didn’t know (honestly, most of us don’t), Germany is the 3rd largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. Sachsen is Germany’s most easterly wine region, renowned for producing world-class Gerwurztraminer. The traditional style of German Spätburgunder is lighter in colour, body and tannic acidity than its counterparts from warmer climates. But viable alternatives exist in a few European wine regions. In Valais, Pinot noir is also blended with Gamay to produce the well known Dôle. Either way, the Ahr River Valley is a serious Pinot Noir hotspot. 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 … Cold winters, high rainfall, and early morning frosts result in beautiful late-ripening Riesling, although the main white grape variety here is Silvaner. 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. You’re surrounded on all sides by steep, vineyard-wrapped mountains, some reaching over 2,000 feet (600 meters). Eiswein, otherwise known as Ice Wine, is the most exclusive of all wine styles, and is popular internationally as a rarity and a specialty. In the case of red wine varieties, Pinot Noir and Dornfeld cultivation are of the greatest importance. To the average wine drinker, the crown jewel of Germany is Riesling. 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. This breath-taking region benefits from ample sunshine and moderate temperatures, largely helped by the vast, heat-reflecting surface of the river Rhine. Franken’s climate is continental with a Mediterranean influence. The Spanish brought the Mission grape to Mexico and Chile. Western Ahr: Known for the region’s most desirable wines, the western Ahr is far rockier, with a soil composed of slate and volcanic stone. Nahe Riesling has a light spiciness and smooth finish, while Silvaner grown in the flatter foothills is floral and fragrant. This idyllic ecological balance also means that grapes can have a high natural sweetness, allowing winemakers to produce those delicious sweet wines Germany has always been so famous for. This sweetness is balanced with a minerality and high acidity that’s become the trademark of Mosel wines. The expertise across all Germany's picturesque winemaking regions is second to none at every level. In fact, it’s the largest red grape growing region in the entire country, thanks to the warm microclimate that exists here. Email: help@virginwines.co.uk. Crisp Riesling is the star of the show, usually grown in a way that encourages noble rot to attack the grapes – a method used for making premium quality sweet wines (see How Is Sweet Wine Made for more info). This is also where you’ll find the steep mountain slopes where the slate retains a terrific amount of heat from the sun. 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. Baden is the third largest wine region in Germany. Company No: 03800762, Tel: 0343 224 1001 Known for its steep slopes overlooking Mosel River, this is Germany’s third largest wine producing appellation. Pinot noir wines are produced in Neuchâtel, Schaffhausen, Zürich, St. Gallen and Bündner Herrschaft. Rheingau has a fairly moderate climate, with warm summers and mild winters. The first thing you’ll notice about an Ahr Spätburgunder is the color. More international and German buyers are picking up wineries, historic houses and vintners’ homes at a fraction of what they would cost in Europe’s better-known wine regions. Covering just 462 hectares, it’s one of Germany’s smaller wine growing areas, yet cultivates an impressive array of grape varieties. Either way, the Ahr River Valley is a serious Pinot Noir hotspot. To step into the Ahr and find out it’s one of Germany’s smallest regions is a shock. The grapes that produce this exceptional wine must be harvested at temperatures of -7°C or below. Wines here tend to be have a high alcohol content – be warned! Expect aromas of black cherry, woodsy raspberry brambles, and rich, ripe strawberry, along with subtle, spicier hints of clove, anise, and cinnamon. The slate soils not only add minerality to the grapes, they also retain heat from the sun at night. 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. St James’ Mill, Whitefriars, Norwich. Nearly all of the 13 German winemaking regions grow Pinot Noir, most notably Ahr (where Spätburgunder accounts for more than 50 percent of plantings), along with Baden, Franken and Württemberg. 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. German Pinot Noir (also known as Spätburgunder) Germany ranks 3rd as the largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world. Riesling is the top white grape variety in the small but mighty Ahr region. Steep vineyards on Rüdesheimer Berg overlooking river Rhine. Below the facility is a sprawling cellar equipped not only with wine barrels and tasting rooms, but with several popular dance halls and dining areas. The vineyards of Ahr run along the valley of the Ahr River. History lovers and wine enthusiasts unite in this key appellation filled with ancient Roman castles and monasteries. New Year’s Eve will look very different this year, so pick an unexpected sparkling wine to match: German … Chalk, sand, gravel, clay, loess, slate, granite. The slate is also particularly well drained, forcing the grapes to grow more gradually. The style and complexity of Silvaner from this region is undeniably hard to beat. From limestone and loam, to red slate and clay on the riverbanks, Rheinhessen has a variation in soils that allows many different styles of grape to be grown. The Ahr Valley is one of those wine regions you’ll never hear about unless you dig. Our efforts focused on the regions of Ahr, Franken, Nahe, Mosel, Pfalz, Rheingau, and Rheinhessen. Alluvial soils in the east are rich in potassium and extremely fertile, while the chalky slopes drain excess water from heavy rainfalls very quickly – all fantastic for producing those high quality wines we’ve come to expect from this region. 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. 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. Ties to France. Baden is the southernmost of Germany's 13 official wine regions. For example, fine German Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) is now emerging from various regions, particularly Baden, Pfalz and even the tiny Ahr Valley. Famous for Pinot Noir, this region features wineries that take a personal, artisan, handcrafted approach to their wines. 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. 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. Known for its crisp, dry fine white wines, the area is named after the Saale and Unstrut rivers that run through the heart of its vineyards. United States Riesling and Pinot Noir being the most recognised names. This region stretching 100 miles along the river valley gets more sunshine than any other area in the country, meaning winemakers are able to grow grapes to extreme ripeness, resulting in high levels of natural sugar and notes of mango, banana and other tropical fruit flavours. The soil in this region tends to be slate and rock, with some volcanic stone found in the middle Ahr Valley. 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