Germany 2007: Keep
Outstanding wines in all quality levels, showing a fine balance of ripeness, fruity acidity and mineral flavours, as well as great ageing potential.
A warm spring fostered extremely early blossoming so that the grapes were already developing nicely by the end of May – providing the longest overall period of vegetation ever recorded in Germany.
Following a marked lack of sunshine throughout June, July and August, ideal autumn weather meant growers could wait patiently for must weights to climb. Harvesting was then long and largely leisurely – well into October in many places – with growers being to able to choose just the right moment of ripeness for each grape variety.
Overall yields were high in Germany , a relief after the small 2006 harvest and warnings of imminent shortages of Riesling in particular. Mosel was up by more than 10% on 2006, with Pfalz, Rheingau and Rheinhessen also reporting decent volumes.
Buoyed by the success of the autumn harvest some growers took the risk of producing eiswein. The gamble paid off handsomely thanks to a bitterly cold December.
Typical varietal aromas are quite pronounced – particularly so in late-ripening varieties such as Riesling and Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir). The long growing season also fostered high quality and ripe tannins in red varieties, which bodes well for full-bodied, velvety red wines.
Among the highlights, Baden whites show good aromatic character and acidity, while reds are deep-coloured and should have good longevity. The Mosel’s late but stress-free harvest yielded juice rich in minerals, promising intensely flavoured wines.
Riesling from the Rheingau also benefited from the dry, sunny autumn which produced grapes described as ‘lusciously ripe’ in some sites.
In the Rheinhessen, growers have praised the wines’ ‘wonderful qualities’ after an ideal autumn.
Rheinhessen: Weingut Wittmann, Weingut Gunderloch; Mosel: Dr Loosen, Reinhard & Beate Knebel, Fritz Haag, Schloss Lieser, St-Urbans-hof, Wiengut Max Ferd Richter; Rheingau: Weingut Fritz Allendorf, Weingut Josef Leitz, Georg Breuer; Nahe: