x

Germany

The German wine industry is notable for two contrasting reasons: producing some of the finest white wines in the world and spectacularly shooting itself in the foot in the last quarter of the 20th century. 

The German wine industry is notable for two contrasting reasons: producing some of the finest white wines in the world and spectacularly shooting itself in the foot in the last quarter of the 20th century. 

read more.
Read More.
Banner
Close

In the '70s and '80s it released into the world a torrent of cheap and not very cheerful wines that continue to colour its reputation and do no justice to the excellence routinely on offer.  For Germany can craft wines from the Riesling grape that are inimitable and many less familiar vines, such as Silvaner, Müller-Thurgau and, for red wines, Portugieser and Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir), can achieve exceptional quality and value for money.

History

Neither the Phoenicians nor the Greeks made it to Germany and so the Romans, who never missed such an opportunity, pioneered the cultivation of the vine and the making of wine on its soil.  Charlemagne, the Church and a wine-loving aristocracy encouraged viticulture to thrive throughout the Middle Ages, but the Thirty Years War in the early 17th century ripped out its heart. In the aftermath, however, Riesling was planted in abundance to ensure that where there was no longer quantity there was quality instead.This legacy remains to this day.

Climate and Conditions

Both topographically and climatically, Germany produces wine on the edge. Vineyards are traditionally located on land unsuitable for other agriculture, chiefly the steep slopes of river valleys, and are usually south-facing to take maximum advantage of the sun. For the climate is marginal and whether the grapes will ripen is the main concern of the German winemaker. This creates problems, and requires great skill in production, but can result in unique wines of exceptional character.

The Classification System

Unlike other countries, where quality, geography or history tend to dominate, Germany has created its own nationally relevant standards of classification.  This is based upon the ripeness of the grapes at the time of the harvest.  It makes perfect sense in the light of their climate, and ensures that every vineyard has the chance to achieve the highest classification with every new vintage, yet this common sense and equality has come at a cost.  Not only is a German wine label an arduous task to decipher, but an average bottle can achieve the same classification as the finest of wines.

Wines of Today

The German wines of today are amongst the finest in the world, just as they always have been. The essential difference between now and the apparently dark days of the seventies and eighties is the quality of the wines that Germany exports. We are no longer awash with the characterless plonk of mass production cooperatives, though these do still exist to entrap the unwary, and are able to find the finest of Rieslings along with the other great wines that the country produces.  Above all, once the pitfalls are sidestepped, Germany produces wines that are incomparable in style to anywhere else in the Old World or the New.

Sort by  
Show  
Display prices  
Print
  1. Solitär Riesling Troken, S A Prüm

    Essence Riesling Feinherb Qba, S A Prüm, Mosel, 2016 75cl

    A superb medium dry riesling from the excellent Prum winery. Punchy concentrated apple aromas meet with lemon and grapefruit to create a wine which would perfectly accompany an aromaticly spiced fish dish.

    More about this product
    £11.22
    6 or more
    £12.00
    each
    £9.35
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £10.00
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  2. Furst Pur Mineral, Silvaner

    Furst Pur Mineral, Silvaner, Fraken, 2012 75cl

    A stunning wine, an unusual style for the area. Almost herbaceous on the nose with mown-hay character. Fairly dry with a minerally palate balancing the finish. A must to try.

    More about this product
    £19.50
    6 or more
    £21.80
    each
    £16.25
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £18.17
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  3. Red Slate Dry Riesling, Dr Loosen,

    Red Slate Dry Riesling, Dr Loosen, Mosel, 2017 75cl

    Classic dry German Riesling with plenty of citrus and peach flavour on the palate followed up by generous minerality. The complexity arrives in the form of the spice and floral notes that are detectable and the depth of the finish.

    More about this product
    £12.11
    6 or more
    £13.90
    each
    £10.09
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £11.58
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  4. Solitär Riesling Troken, S A Prüm

    Solitär Riesling Troken, S A Prüm, Mosel, 2016 75cl

    A dryer style of riesling, with peachy aromas. Stone fruit and fresh apple in the mouth balanced with mineral flavours and a hint of petrol.

    More about this product
    £11.22
    6 or more
    £12.00
    each
    £9.35
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £10.00
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  5. Villa Wolf Pinot Gris

    Villa Wolf Pinot Gris, Pfalz, 2017 75cl

    Citrus flavours, predominately lemon, on the nose and plenty of stone fruit on the palate. The two combine wonderfully for a full flavour that has a satisfyingly crisp finish.

    More about this product
    £9.90
    6 or more
    £11.65
    each
    £8.25
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £9.71
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  6. Oliver Zeter Sauvignon Blanc, Pfalz, 2016

    Oliver Zeter Sauvignon Blanc, Pfalz, 2017 75cl

    An excellent German Sauvignon which is partially aged in oak barrels. This gives the wine a richness and depth whilst still retaining its vibrancy.

    More about this product
    £14.47
    6 or more
    £16.64
    each
    £12.06
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £13.87
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  7. Oliver Zeter Spätburgunder, Pfalz, 2015

    Oliver Zeter Spätburgunder, Pfalz, 2016 75cl

    A finely honed medium bodied wine which balances fresh summer berries on the nose with a seductive smoky finish.

    More about this product
    £14.47
    6 or more
    £16.64
    each
    £12.06
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £13.87
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  8. Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir (Spätburgunder), Rhine

    Louis Guntrum Pinot Noir (Spätburgunder), Rhine, 2015 75cl

    Aromas of cherry and soft spice fill a nose that hints at the complexity to come on the palate. The body is light but is deified by the depth of flavour on the palate and the finish. A plethora of summer fruit with soft but influential spice make this a superb red that is great on its own or with food.

    More about this product
    £13.26
    6 or more
    £15.00
    each
    £11.05
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £12.50
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading
  9. Villa Wolf Pinot Noir Rosé, Germany

    Villa Wolf Pinot Noir Rosé, Germany, 2017 75cl

    A flavoursome wine with a refreshing crispness. A relatively low alcohol rosé ideal for drinking at lunch time and with your summer barbecues.

    More about this product
    £9.90
    6 or more
    £11.65
    each
    £8.25
    6 or more Excl. VAT
    £9.71
    each Excl. VAT
    Qty loading