Friday, October 9, 2009
WINE PRODUCING REGIONS OF GERMANY
Franconia or Franken - around portions of Main river, and the only wine region situated in Bavaria. Noted for growing many varieties on chalky soil and for producing powerful dry Silvaner wines.
Hessische Bergstraße (Hessian Mountain Road) - a small region in the federal state Hesse dominated by Riesling.
Mittelrhein - along the middle portions of river Rhine, primarily between the regions Rheingau and Mosel, and dominated by Riesling.
Mosel - along the river Moselle (Mosel) and its tributaries, the rivers Saar and Ruwer, and was previously known as Mosel-Saar-Ruwer. The Mosel region is dominated by Riesling grapes and slate soils, and the best wines are grown in dramatic-looking steep vineyards directly overlooking the rivers. This region produces wine that is light in body, crisp, of high acidity and with pronounced mineral character. The only region to stick to Riesling wine with noticeable residual sweetness as the "standard" style, although dry wines are also produced.
Nahe - around the river Nahe where volcanic origins give very varied soils. Mixed grape varieties but the best known producers primarily grow Riesling, and some of them have achieved world reputation in recent years.
Palatinate or Pfalz - the second largest producing region in Germany, with production of very varied styles of wine (especially in the southern half), where red wine has been on the increase. The northern half of the region is home to many well known Riesling producers with a long history, which specialize in powerful Riesling wines in a dry style. Warmer than all other German wine regions. Until 1995, it was known in German as Rheinpfalz.
Rheingau - a small region situated at a bend in river Rhine which give excellent conditions for wine growing. The oldest documented references to Riesling come from the Rheingau region and it is the region where many German wine making practices have originated, such as the use of Prädikat designations, and where many high-profile producers are situated. Dominated by Riesling with some Spätburgunder. The Rheingau Riesling style is in-between Mosel and the Palatinate and other southern regions, and at its finest combines the best aspects of both.
Rheinhessen or Rhenish Hesse - the largest production area in Germany. Once known as Liebfraumilch land, but a quality revolution has taken place since the 1990s. Mixed wine styles and both red and white wines. The best Riesling wines are similar to Palatinate Riesling - dry and powerful. Despite its name, it lies in the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, not in Hesse.
Saale-Unstrut - one of two regions in former East Germany, situated along the rivers Saale and Unstrut, and Germany's northernmost wine growing region.
Saxony or Sachsen - one of two regions in former East Germany, in the southeastern corner of the country, along the river Elbe in the federal state of Saxony.
Württemberg - a traditional red wine region, where grape varieties Trollinger (the region's signature variety), Schwarzriesling and Lemberger outnumber the varieties that dominate elsewhere. One of two wine regions in the federal state of Baden-Württemberg.
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