Blauer Lemberger

Blauer Lemberger

Officiellt går denna röda druva under namnet ”Blauer Limberger”, men kallas även för ”Lemberger” och ”Blaufränkisch”. Lemberger skördas sent och härstammar troligen från vingårdar längst de sydligare sträckningarna av Donau. Druvan omskrevs i Österrike under den andra halvan av 1700-talet och odlas där även idag men då under namnet Blaufränkisch. I Ungern kallas den Kékfrankos.

 

Lemberger kan ta många former och färger som varierar från lätta och fruktiga viner till koncentrerade och tanninrika men vinerna är ofta mycket mörka i färgen. Stilen kan variera från relativt lätt till mycket intensiv med smak av björnbär, plommon, vinbär, krusbär, fläderbär bananer och choklad. Vinet har också en del vegetabiliska toner som gröna bönor eller grön paprika.

 

Beroende på tekniken som används vid tillverkningen kan det ha ett mer fruktigt eller tanninrikt uttryck och lång eftersmak. Tack vare dess syra, höga koncentration och tannin, har torra Lembergerviner god lagringspotential.

 

 

 

Under de senaste decennierna har nyplanteringen av Lemberger ökat stadigt. På 1980-talet odlades druvsorten på omkring 400-500 hektar, medan den idag upptar cirka 1200 hektar av Tysklands vinodlingsareal. Druvan odlas nästan uteslutande i Württemberg, där den står för mer än 10% av den totala vinodlingsarealen. Sammanlagt odlas druvan på en procent av den samlade vinodligsarealen i Tyskland.


History

Officially classified under the name “Blauer Limberger”, this red grape variety also goes by the synonyms “Lemberger” and “Blaufränkisch”. The late-ripening Lemberger probably originated in vineyards on the lower stretches of the Danube River. The grape was documented in Austria in the second half of the 18th century and is cultivated there to this day (as Blaufränkisch) in Burgenland and near Vienna. In Hungary it is known as Kékfrankos. In the 19th century a “wine improvement society” advocated replacing high-yielding varieties with high-quality grapes (such as Lemberger) in the Kingdom of Württemberg. Indeed, Lemberger wines from Württemberg were the favorite of the first president of the Federal Repubic of Germany, Theodor Heuss, and it is said that the variety was equally as popular with Bismarck and Napoleon.

Viniculture/Taste

For wine connoisseurs, Lemberger is a “coat of many colors”.....ranging from light and fruity wines to those that are rich in extract and tannin (of Spätlese and Auslese ripeness). Usually, the wines are extremely dark in color. The bouquet can range from rather quiet to powerful, reminiscent of blackberries, sweet or sour cherries, plums, currants, gooseberries, elderberries, bananas and chocolate, as well as vegetal aromas, such as green beans or green bell peppers. Depending on vinification techniques, the wines have a fruity or a tannic accent and a long finish. Thanks to their acid, extract and tannin profile, even drier versions of Lemberger have good aging potential. Barrique-aging adds another dimension...reminiscent of Mediterranean warmth and charm. Ambitious vintners and cooperatives often blend Lemberger with Trollinger (depending on the percentage of the cuvée's components, the wine will be labeled with the predominant variety named first). Sparkling wine, or Sekt, made from the Lemberger grape is a real speciality.

Significance

During the past decades there has been a steady increase in the vineyard area planted with Lemberger. In the 80s it comprised some 400 to 500 ha (988 to 1,235 acres); in 1998, it surpassed 1,000 ha (ca. 2,500 acres); and today there are nearly 1,200 ha (ca. 3,000 acres). It is almost exclusively cultivated in Württemberg, where it accounts for about 10% of the total vineyard area (in Germany overall, 1%).


Viticulture

Lemberger thrives in a warm climate and wind-protected sites, not least because bud-burst is early and it ripens late. In very good sites, this Württemberg specialty brings forth excellent quality. It does well in various soil types, especially fertile, deep, loess-loam soils. Yields are average in size.