- Q & A
Eighty-year old winemaker, Johann Schild, believes in small quantity and high quality winemaking, which is why he strictly hand selects his grapes from the renowned Urziger Wurzgarten Vineyard. His wines are uniquely aromatic and are manufactured from vines averaging 50-70 years old. The Urziger Wurzgarten vineyard is internationally recognized as a specialty even among the vineyards of the Mosel Valley. The name translates as "spice garden." The small family estate with 2.5 acres of prime vineyard parcels in central Urziger Wurzgarten which features 60 year old vines, low yields due to age of the vines and intense flavor concentration.
Schild lives an almost Spartan-like existence in his generations-old vineyard in the heart of Germany's Mosel region. The two major growing regions in Germany are the Rhine Valley and the Mosel. The finer wines in each come from vineyards adjacent to their respective rivers (the Rhine and the Mosel) which provide a more temperate climate. Germany is famous for its Riesling and no country can come close to approaching its superiority in crafting wines from this grape.
The system of labeling wines in Germany is based upon the condition or ripeness of the grapes at the time of harvest. It used to be that Germany's difficult growing conditions did not allow the grapes to ripen so they must add sugar to attain an acceptable level of sugar for the yeast to ferment. For the last 30 years, though, this has rarely happened and Germany is producing the greatest wines in their 1,000+ history of winemaking.
Today, German wines benefit from very advanced winemaking technology. A few other special features should be mentioned. The wines of Germany tend to be lower in alcohol somewhere between 7% and 10%. The labeling regulations are the most complex but also the most stringent of any winemaking country. And finally, German wines are enjoyed before, between or during meals the way Americans enjoy beer. To put it in perspective, five glasses of German Riesling of this selection have about the same alcohol as three glasses of California Chardonnay.
Here is a classic Mosel Riesling with lovely apple and spice, hints of lemon peel and granite. Would taste even better with seared ahi in a wasabi cream
ReviewsBe the first to write a review
©2014 The Wine of the Month Club. All Rights Reserved.