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. Mittelrhein is the quintessential German fairy tale region. Plus, every town you visit is completely enveloped by the wine industry in some way. Distinct Oregon Pinot Noir Growing Conditions. Pinot Noir rules the vineyards here. 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. 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. 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. The first thing you’ll notice about an Ahr Spätburgunder is the color. Key grape varieties here are the usual suspects – Pinot Noir and Riesling, with a bit of Silvaner and Gutedel too. Wines made in this region are also shaped by the Elbe, as its weathered granite soils and geological makeup influence the grapes. NR3 1TN. United States But viable alternatives exist in a few European wine regions. 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. And, it’s a bit different from the Pinot most of us know. Known for its steep slopes overlooking Mosel River, this is Germany’s third largest wine producing appellation. Loamy, granite soils here are ideal for Riesling, producing grapes that are rich in fruity, citrus notes. Pinot noir wines are produced in Neuchâtel, Schaffhausen, Zürich, St. Gallen and Bündner Herrschaft. Second only to Mosel in its Riesling plantings, this key wine producing appellation is home to around 10,000 vine growers. Nahe Riesling has a light spiciness and smooth finish, while Silvaner grown in the flatter foothills is floral and fragrant. Among Germany’s red grapes, Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir) is the most widely planted, mainly in the warmer parts of the country. The expertise across all Germany's picturesque winemaking regions is second to none at every level. Especially in cold climate regions like Germany, Pinot Noir has the ability to be delightfully lighter and lower in tannin than other red wines. 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. Pinot Noir is one of the most … It’s a small, high quality region of only 400 hectares of vines, with Riesling accounting for well over half of its output. 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). Most fine wines produced here are consumed locally, so it’s a real treat if you can track down a bottle outside of Germany! Ahr benefits from mild temperatures, despite its northern location, and a Mediterranean style climate that’s great for red grape varieties. Baden wine region - kissed by the sun. 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. St James’ Mill, Whitefriars, Norwich. Virgin Wine Online Ltd. Try visiting online stores, or check with your local wine shop about their availability. The Spanish brought the Mission grape to Mexico and Chile. In the case of red wine varieties, Pinot Noir and Dornfeld cultivation are of the greatest importance. A variety of soil types exist here that work well for viticulture. Soils also vary hugely here, from exceptionally fertile volcanic igneous rock, to heat-retaining slate and nutrient-rich clay. The ability to grow grapes with such naturally high sweetness and acidity is also ideal for sparkling wine, referred to in Germany as Sekt. This warmth allows black grapes to thrive, producing flavoursome red wines with an acidic character. One of many vineyard-lined bends on the meandering Mosel River. Taking up nearly three quarters of the 500 hectares of vineyard in Mittelrhein, Riesling from this cool climate area has high acidity and strong floral aromas. By the way, Loess is same soil type found in the Columbia Valley in Washington and Oregon. German Pinot Noir in Bordeaux Country. Franken may be one of Germany’s smaller wine regions, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in quality. Shell limestone, sandstone, loess-loam, copper slate. 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. 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. Its fertility and warmth allow wines to display rounder, fruit forward notes, with less acidity. The icy conditions in the cooler months are turned into an advantage by winemakers, who work in harmony with the frosty weather to create luscious naturally sweet wines, known locally as Eiswein (think ‘Ice Wine’). Vineyards range in altitude from flat plains in the east to steep slopes in the west. The vineyards of Ahr run along the valley of the Ahr River. Hillside ruins, half-timbered towns and medieval castles are dotted along the banks of the Rhine, providing an enchanting backdrop for the sloping vineyards on the water’s edge. I also write plays, jokes, and the occasional diatribe. The grapes that produce this exceptional wine must be harvested at temperatures of -7°C or below. 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. Perhaps it’s because the Germans don’t want to share, or maybe it’s because Burgundy doesn’t like the competition next door. There’s also a definite earthiness beneath it all, described by some as mushrooms or damp leaves. Derived from the Latin word for ‘palace’, Pfalz is a scenic wine region with a peaceful landscape. The style and complexity of Silvaner from this region is undeniably hard to beat. Rich in tradition, Rheingau is one of Germany’s most distinguished wine regions. These were high-end pinot noirs, which, if they were available in the United States, might retail for $70 to $140. 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. New world Pinot tends toward a light spiciness and smooth finish, while grown! 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