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Württemberg: The Insider Hotspot for German Purple Wines

For those who suppose all German wine is white, this up-and-coming area could have plenty of surprises for you. This place is all about German pink wines.

Württemberg is the place to find distinctive, scrumptious pink wines that span the vary from earthy and spicy to full of life and floral. This in-depth information to the wines of Württemberg will allow you to in on all of the secrets and techniques.

Württemberg Wine Information

Württemberg German red wines to try

You could know Mosel, Nahe, and Rheingau because the properties of Germany’s legendary vineyards. Surprisingly, Württemberg outproduces all three, however most individuals have by no means even heard of it.

The explanation? Locals guzzle “all however a small trickle of the wines,” as Frank Schoonmaker wrote in his traditional 1956 information, The Wines of Germany. The area has the nation’s highest per-capita wine consumption.

Prior to now, Württemberg was, in wine author Jon Bonné’s phrases, “Germany’s nice afterthought” — a spot for easy, usually skinny and sweetish wines. However a brand new technology of gifted younger winemakers is altering the tune.

Now it’s “just too good to miss,” says Bonné.

Critic Stephan Reinhardt notes the wines are “a lot brisker, purer, dryer, extra advanced and stylish than in former instances.” Germans have made Württemberg a contented looking floor for brand new pink wine discoveries, with a little bit of world-class Riesling too.


Wines to Know

The area’s heat days and funky nights enable pink grapes to develop full flavors, whereas preserving attribute cool-climate freshness from retained acidity. Local weather change has been, if something, a boon to Württemberg’s wine scene. Purple grapes routinely attain full ripeness.

The Purple Wine Varieties

schiava-trollinger-grape-illustration-winefolly

Trollinger

(Schiava) A lightweight, snappy pink wine with flavors of violet, pink currants and strawberries.

True to its Alpine roots, Trollinger (the “Swabian nationwide drink”) is as refreshing as a bluebird day within the mountains. It’s vivacious and light-bodied, with snappy acidity and subdued tannins. Within the glass, search for flavors and aromas of violet, pink currants, strawberries, candy or bitter pink cherries, and typically a touch of bitter almond on the end. Some pure variations are nearer to the Poulsard of Jura (think about a tart, earthy Pinot).

Trollinger tastes nice with a variety of meals. Undoubtedly take into account the hearty native fare of Swabian dumplings and roast suckling pig.
lemberger-blaufrankisch-illustration-winefolly

Lemberger

(Blaufränkisch) A easy, medium-bodied pink with flavors of black pepper, marionberry and woodland forest.

The darkish, good-looking prince of German reds, Blaufränkisch may be finest summed up within the phrases of 1 fan as “Swabian Bojo“: juicy, contemporary, and intense, however nonetheless solely medium bodied, with delicate tannins. A great deal of black pepper, marionberry, plum, candy or bitter black cherry, and an earthy, woodland character. It may be extra savory and herbaceous than fruity. And, it’s quick changing into Württemberg’s flagship severe pink, with wonderful growing older potential for the very best examples.

First documented within the mid-19th century in its Austrian homeland. At the moment, in what was then the Kingdom of Württemberg, a “wine enchancment society” advocated changing high-yielding native varieties with Lemberger.

pinot-noir-spatburgunder-grape-illustration-winefolly

Spätburgunder

(Pinot Noir) wines with tart fruit flavors of rhubarb, bitter cherry and spicy acidity.

Much less of this Burgundian grape is planted in Württemberg than in neighboring Baden. Notable for its radiant pink fruit, rhubarb, bitter cherry notes, typically with baking or pungent spice accents, advantageous tannins, palpable minerality, freshness, and depth.
pinot-meunier-grape-illustration-winefolly

Schwarzriesling

(Pinot Meunier) A variant of Pinot that ripens barely sooner making elegant and minerally Pinot Noir-like wines.

Not like Riesling, this pink grape, higher generally known as a participant in Champagne blends, is a specialty of Württemberg, the place it makes nice Schillerwein (the native time period for a crisp, gentle rosé). It finds its manner into some glowing Sekt as nicely.

The White Wine Varieties

riesling-grape-illustration-winefolly

Riesling

Inside Württemberg, look to the micro-region: the Remstal. This small aspect valley, with its larger elevations, cooler temperatures, optimum daylight hours, and limestone and sandstone soils provides agency, compact, concentrated, deeply expressive Rieslings loaded with stone and citrus fruit, moist rocks, contemporary herbs, and infrequently a marked saltiness.

The very best of those Rieslings are constructed to age — within the phrases of 1 Württemberg producer — “without end.” As in different components of Germany, Württemberg Rieslings may be bone dry (Trocken) to candy (search for phrases like Feinherb or Kabinett to point this).
kerner-wine-grape-illustration

Kerner

A real native! First bred in 1969 in Württemberg and named after a neighborhood poet, it’s a crossing of Trollinger and Riesling (sure, a pink and white). In contrast with Riesling, Kerner may be grown in much less favorable websites and gives larger yields, explaining why it’s probably the most broadly planted trendy crossing in Germany. Wines are contemporary, racy, and fruity or savory — not not like Riesling — but milder in acidity, with refined notes of apricot and almond.
sekt-champagne-glass-illustration-winefolly

Sekt

(Glowing)

Germany’s first Sekt vineyard opened in Esslingen-am-Neckar, Württemberg in 1826. Grapes grown in cooler components of the area the place excessive ranges of acidity are retained are usually the supply for these glowing wines.


Quick Details About Württemberg Wines

  • Highest pink wine manufacturing (80% of whole) in Germany
  • Highest per capita wine consumption in Germany
  • Fourth-largest of Germany’s 13 wine rising areas (aka Anbaugebiete)
  • Rising local weather is cool continental: chilly winters, heat, balmy, sun-filled summers, and plentiful rainfall
  • Latitude is roughly 48°N (similar as Minnesota and Montana)
  • Whole 27,895 acres / 11,289 hectares of vineyards
  • Common winery measurement is > 1.2 acres / zero.6 hectares
  • Most vineyards are on slopes or steep hillsides on among the highest winery land within the nation
  • Highest proportion of cooperatively made wine in Germany: 16,500 winegrowers, of which 14,980 belong to co-ops
  • The Neckar River (and its tributaries) average temperatures and transfer air to stop frost and illness

First in Wine Training

Württemberg pioneered the motion to ascertain viticultural faculties in Germany. Weinsberg was the primary, based in 1860. (Geisenheim, within the Rheingau, now higher recognized internationally, was not based till 1872.) Weinsberg gave the world the white grape Kerner, a Riesling x Trollinger hybrid.

 
wurttemberg wineries weingut to watch

Winemakers to Watch

Regardless that the overwhelming majority of Württemberg wines are nonetheless made at co-ops, a number of particular person producers are value noting. The next Weingüter (estates in German) symbolize among the better of what’s popping out of Württemberg proper now. (Names you’re most probably to come across outdoors Germany.)

In no explicit order:

How one can Discover a Nice Bottle of Württemberg Wine

Discovering good wine from Württemberg may be difficult as a result of solely a fistful of producers are being exported. Nonetheless, there are a couple of secrets and techniques to connecting with a fantastic bottle wanting shopping for a airplane ticket:

  1. Test for the grape selection (Trollinger, Lemberger, Spätburgunder, or Riesling)
  2. Search the again label for the area of origin (Württemberg)
  3. In search of dry pink wines? Dry wines are labeled “Trocken.”
  4. Feeling fancy? Search for the VDP image on the bottleneck as an indicator of one thing particularly prime quality and distinctive.

The place within the World is Württemberg?

From Stuttgart, Germany’s automotive capital (dwelling to Audi, Mercedes, and Porsche), you’re only a 10-minute drive from Württemberg’s hilly grand cru vineyards. There are millions of vest pocket vineyards clustered alongside the area’s many river valleys.

This patch of postcard-perfect Germany is often lumped along with Baden, for the reason that two type considered one of Germany’s federal states.

However in wine phrases, Württemberg is the cooler and extra productive area. Whereas each areas excel in pink wines, Baden’s hotter, sunnier local weather (very like that of Alsace, which it borders) permits it to specialise in Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir).

The visually stunning organic Stettener Mönchberg vineyards at Weingut Karl Haidle. Photo courtesy of Germanwines.de
The visually gorgeous natural Stettener Mönchberg vineyards at Weingut Karl Haidle. Photograph courtesy of Germanwines.de.

Württemberg’s relative coolness and soil sorts swimsuit it finest for Trollinger (21% of all plantings), Lemberger (15% and rising) and Schwarzriesling (14%), and, in some areas, Riesling (18%), and a small quantity of Spätburgunder (11%).

Württemberg’s Grand Crus

Most of Germany’s finest vineyards are reserved for royalty: Riesling. However in Württemberg, you’ll find grand cru websites planted with Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir), Lemberger (Blaufränkisch), and different varieties too. Count on distinctive focus and finesse from these wines, with worth tags to match.

wurttemberg wine region soils Muschelkalk Schilfsandstein Bunter-Mergel

Wine Soils of Württemberg

Most of Württemberg is nestled within the foothills of the so-called “Swabian Alb,” a highland area that rose up out of the Jurassic Sea thousands and thousands of years in the past. A number of the space’s most distinctive soil sorts are:

  • Muschelkalk (shell limestone): historic seabeds that are actually the chalky preserves of thousands and thousands of years value of fossilized sea life.
  • Bunter Mergel (coloured marls): a crumbly, multihued mixture of limestone and clay.
  • Schilfsandstein (reed sandstone): coarse, compressed sand and silt soil that takes its title from the traditional reeds (Schilf) fossilized inside it.

These low-nutrient soils are powerful to farm for meals crops, however are good for vines. They power roots deep into the earth and management vigor, yielding concentrated, expressive wines.


If You Go

Besen are a Württemberg specialty. They’re seasonal taverns the place you possibly can benefit from the wines of that winery and pattern native dishes. It is a nice option to discover the area. Search for a brush (Besen in German) on the door to level the way in which.

Sources

Oxford Companion to Wine
GermanWines.de
WinesofGermany.co.uk
Germany Journey
Wine Searcher
Choice Massale
Schatzi Wines
Rudi Wiest
VDP


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By Valerie Kathawala
I am a NYC-based wine author consuming her manner by Austria, Germany, and Italy, with occasional digressions.

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