Germany rises as one of the world's best wine country regions
Posted on Thursday 14 June 2012
in Holidays, Germany, Berlin, Frankfurt
By Sophia Choice
When travellers think of wine, images of Tuscan vineyards, Napa Valley hills and Buenos Aires come to mind as some of the world's most renowned regions that produce varieties of the sometimes smooth, other times sweet libation. To venture down the road less travelled, Kiwis can book flights to Frankfurt, Germany, and experience one of the most underrated and up-and-coming spots for wine connoisseurs. The country was named one of the top locales to venture this summer by travel writers from USA Today, among other worthy vacation destinations such as Amsterdam, St. Vincent Island, San Francisco and Boston.
Rhine wines abound throughout the Middle Valley
To start off the adventure tour in Germany, Kiwis can jet set to the 65-kilometre stretch of the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, a district covered in historic churches, castles, fortresses and refreshing wine. Considered a romantic region by many visitors, the valley is paved by the massive Rhine River, with stunning castles such as Koblenz, Stolzenfels, Katz and Maus lining the banks of the body of water. However, what really makes this territory rich is the abundance of Rhine wine growing among the vineyard-decorated countryside.
Of all choices, Riesling is the most abundant in the valley. More than 70 percent of the land's grapes are late to ripen and tart like berries, creating the perfect combination for the sweet and crisp German wine. Less common but still easy to come by are the pinot noir and pinot gris varieties, of which the former is bold and velvety and the latter is drier, with hints of melon and honey. Most of the vineyards travellers can visit are historic, family orchards that typically house a public inn or seasonal wine room on site to entice visitors to step onto their land and sample the products that they've proudly fostered for decades. Kiwis should also be sure to ask about upcoming festivals, as German wine producers are known to host numerous street celebrations throughout the year.
Moselle Riesling ranks among the world's finest
After travellers have fully explored the valley, they can venture over to Moselle, another celebrated gorge in Germany that is famous for its 242-kilometre Wine Route. As the oldest wine-growing region in the country, Moselle is a great place for adventurers to learn about the history of the land and explore the interior of some of the oldest castles in Europe. Kiwis can be sure to sample the white wines of Saar and Ruwer vineyards, which rank as some of the best in the world. The flavors of these libations are typically light, low in alcohol, crisp and high in acidity, featuring flowery aromas.
Find the steepest vineyard in the world in Germany
Along the trail, holidaymakers will also discover the land of Palatinate, which boasts 5,300 hectares of Riesling vines, and the stunning Bremmer Calmont vineyard. The nearly vertical hill of meandering vines possesses the record as the steepest vineyard in the world. A visit to this particular landscape is essential before holidays in Europe come to an end. Alongside the rows of grapes are stone stairs built directly into jagged walls so visitors can safely stroll through the leafy green maze. While it may seem rather simple to explore the land by foot, actually caring for the vines and treating the grapes takes meticulous precision, effort and even balance on some of the steepest points.
At the end of the track, both the Rhine and Moselle rivers combine into one, which will conclude the tour of the spectacular German scenery as well as the end of Kiwis' ultimate wine tasting excursion.
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