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Icewine: Germany's lucky punch

01/11/2017

Starting end of november 2016 icewine grapes are being harvested in Germany. After prior insular reports from Saxony (noc 21st) most of the other 12 wine growing regions brought in their deeply frozen crop the following weeks in order to produce the aromatic speciality.


A second lucky punch for Germany's wine branch was a further drop in temperatures early january 2017 when additional icewine could get harvested successfully (video).

Germany's Wine Princess Christina Schneider (photo) from Franconia was amoung the first happy producers to post pictures form her icewine harvest via social media channels. In her case the frozen grapes harvested are the variety "Silvaner". It was brought in during freezing temperatures of -9,7 degreee Celsius in the vinyard site named "Nordheimer Vögelein" (sugar level 162 ° Oechsle).

Mosel, Nahe, Pfalz, Rheinhessen were other regions were icewine was harvested last night. For exmample in the historic village of Steinberg next to Eberbach Abbey (Rheingau, State of Hessen), frozen Riesling grapes were harvested at  -7,6 ° Celsius (sugar level 138° Oechsle). The cellarmaster expects to produce outstanding icewine qualities and is looking forward to store it.

Furthermore Frick Winery from Flörsheim, also Rheinhessen region, took on the challenge at freezing nightly temperatures and brought in Riesling grapes with 150° Oechsle.

Whereas in the similar large Pfalz region it was mainly freezing around the city of Bad Dürkheim: Fitz-Ritter Winery, The Herrenberg-Honigsäckel Association and the "Vierjahreszeiten Winzer eG" are amoung the lucky icewine winners.

Some days earlier, at november 21st it had been cold enough to harvest icewine in a few insular cases in the eastern wine growing region of Saale-Unstrut (Saxony).

According to Germany's Federal Wine Law, it must be at least -7° C cold, in order to harvest the deeply frozen grapes. They need to be put on the wine press in a deep frozen state in order to squeeze the concentrated juice out of the individual grapes (video: thick and sticky icewine dripping from wine press).

The winemakers are looking forward to additional cold nights in order to harvest remaining grapes that were left at the vinyards in the hope of a 2016 icewine vintage (video: icewine harvest in Germany).

Read more about icewine!

Deutsche Weinprinzessin Christina Schneider freut sich über die erste Eisweinernte in diesem Jahr bei -9,7° C