German Fine Wines

The best German white wines centre around one grape variety: Riesling. The variety Jancis Robinson has called '...the world's most misunderstood, and mispronounced, grape variety.' (it's 'Reece-ling' by the way.)

It was Germany that first got to grips with Riesling, back in the Middle Ages. Then it was the wine for princes and bishops, the nobility and wealthy. Getting grapes to ripen sufficiently to make good wine used to be tricky in Germany, and this saw interlopers like Elbling and Silvaner take over as the preferred varieties.

Thankfully for those of us who recognise Riesling's potential, climate change means Riesling's made a comeback, and in the hands of some particularly dedicated German winemakers, is again making, quite literally, many of the best Riesling wines anywhere on earth.

Key German wine regions, where you'll find the country's most lauded and celebrated wines, are the Mosel Valley, and the Rhine Valley (with Rheinhessen, Rheingau, Pfalz, and Baden being the premier regions here). The Nahe and Franken are also producing top wines.

"Some wine lovers are convinced that German Riesling is the world's greatest white wine, by virtue of its exquisite clarity and definition, its balance, its freshness, its mineral charge and its seemingly effortless ability to age." Andrew Jefford

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