11_germany - 63 THE WINES OF GERMANY The wines of Germany...

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63 THE WINES OF GERMANY The wines of Germany are very different from those of the European countries we have covered to date. The German wine regions are at the northern limit of viticulture. Most of the grapes and wines are white because most red varieties need more heat to ripen than is available in Germany. Because of the cool climate in which the grapes grow, German wine is high in acidity , giving it a very tart taste. Most of the German wine that reaches the U.S. is sweet ; the sweetness balances the acidity. In the more expensive wines, the sweetness comes from residual grape sugar either as a result of deliberately arrested fermentation or from grapes that were so high in sugar that the fermentation stopped naturally before all the sugar was fermented. In the less expensive wines, the sweetness is from the addition of süssreserve , sterile juice or juice concentrate. The way wine is identified and classified in Germany is also quite different. Whereas in the previously covered countries, quality wine is defined by whether it is produced within a specifically delimited geographic area, in Germany the land is considered neutral . The quality categories of wine are based on the sugar concentration in the grapes at harvest . Germany is much colder than the other countries we have covered and it is difficult to get grapes fully ripe, hence the great appreciation for sugar in ripe grapes. Vineyard sites in Germany are carefully selected for their exposure to the sun. The ideal location in Germany is on a south-facing slope along a river, because the water in the river acts to moderate the temperature. Certain well-situated vineyards in Germany
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This note was uploaded on 06/29/2009 for the course VEN 3 taught by Professor Can'tremember during the Spring '08 term at UC Davis.

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11_germany - 63 THE WINES OF GERMANY The wines of Germany...

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