Germany has a strong wine and beer tradition. German wines are indeed a study of balance between acid and sugar. Many wine drinkers believe that all German wines are sweet or that all Riesling is sweet. This assumption is decidedly untrue. In fact, Germany is home to many of the finest dry wines in Europe. German wine labels and wine laws seem to do very little about making life easier for the consumer. These labels are often confusing and complicated and understood by few wine drinkers. The truth is that there is a wealth of information regarding provenance, ripeness, whether or not a wine is estate bottled and much more. Though there are vineyards in numerous regions throughout Germany, winemakers and consumers seem agree that Riesling is simply the finest grape in Germany. This is evident because Riesling is planted in all of the best vineyard sites throughout the country. Muller Thurgau is also planted throughout Germany as well as numerous other grapes including Spatburgunder (Pinot Noir), Germany's best red. In addition to Riesling's spot atop the German wine hierarchy, German producers agree upon a quality designation system, QmP. These designations listed in terms of ripeness, which is often confused with sweetness. The designations are listed in terms of increasing ripeness: Kabinett, Spatlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Eiswein, Trockenbeerenauslese.
The Mosel Saar Ruwer is perhaps the most important German wine region. Perhaps the two most important areas are located around the towns of Piesport and Bernkastel. The wines from PIesport are fragrant and honeyed. The wines from Bernkastel are also renowned for their complex, honeyed flavors, minerality and acidity. Some of the late harvest wines around Bernkastel are among the best dessert wines in the world. Both of these towns and the areas around them contribute numerous high quality vineyard sites to the German wine landscape.
Rheingau vineyards are south facing are prone to the botrytis rot, because of the mists produced by the river. Rheingau produces some of the finest dessert wines imaginable, but also producer some dry wines and everything in between that are of astonishing quality. Rheingau wines tend to taste of peaches and tangerines and tend to be fuller, in general, than their Mosel cousins. Much of the Rhein has marl in its soil which often contributes a richness and even spicy character to the wines.
"A well balanced and slightly fruity, semi-dry Riesling. This is a crisp and refreshing wine that pairs well with seafood, chicken and salads."
"Pale silver straw color. Bold honeyed lime zest and spiced golden plum aromas with a silky, fruity sweet medium body and a golden raisin compote, honeyed lemon peel, melon and chalk eraser accented finish. Flavorful and fun."
"93 pts - WS Luscious and tangy, with grapefruit and raisin notes permeating the creamy texture. Offset by good acidity, with a lingering grapefruit and spice aftertaste. Drink now through 2020. 120 cases made. Rated as one of the Top 10 Rieslings at the Hyatt National Riesling Challenge, 2006."
"This wine is refreshing with slightly fruity character and bright crisp palate that lingers in the finish"
"An classic silvaner on the nose, with vegetation and a fine intensity. Medium bodied and intense in the mouth with light earthiness and a touch of minerality. Very elegant with lots of grapey fruit and citrus. Good acidity and length."
"A golden/straw-colored German dessert wine. Aromatic and full-bodied with a pleasant sweetness. Low in acidity. Pairs beautifully with cakes, pie, or fruit desserts...or simply on it's own!"
"Known as The Monkey Wine due to its distinct bottle. They put this on the bottle because of the valley that Affentaler is located in Baden. This dry Riesling offers a slightly fruity flavour that they recommend serving with seafood, salads, and poultry dishes."
"Harvested from select, very ripe bunches of grapes at the peak of maturity. This is a luxurious, sweet, and full bodied wine with a fragrant, noble, and fruity aroma. It pairs exceptionally well with desserts, including fruit, pies, and cakes."
"A nuanced touch of residual sugar softens the edges of this zesty, light-footed Riesling. Its sweet-tart lemon and lime flavors are thirst-quenching and crisp. Touches of crushed minerals and nuts mark its brisk finish."
"Whiffs of lemon and lime are subtly aromatic on this dry, full-bodied wine. The palate is bright and fresh with pear and apple flavors, but elevated by a penetrating sheen of minerality that lingers through the finish."