Thursday, November 25, 2010

German Red Wine Award 2010 - Deutscher Rotweinpreis 2010

German Red Wine Award 2010

The annual German Red wine Competition, organized by the international wine magazine Vinum, exists since 1987. At that time, German red wine was a red wine for people who prefer white wine - a red wine for white wine lovers. Red wine accounted for only about 15 percent of German wine output. Today, we are well over 35 percent. And not only the vineyard area planted with red grapes has expanded dramatically, but also the quality has improved considerably. Today, German red wine can compete with any red wine in the world, I believe. As a result, German red wines are increasingly appearing in the international wine market. Of course, given its location, they tend to be not like the fruity red wines we know from warmer countries, but lean and more elegant, with a lot of finesse.

20 Prizes Were Awarded

The 1400 German red wines, which were submitted to the contest, were grouped into 8 different categories. As a general rule, only wines without sweet reserve (Suessreserve, sterilized juice),could participate. 20 prizes were awarded in these 8 categories, with Wuerttemberg alone receiving 9 of them. The 18 winemakers who won prizes were honored in Ludwigsburg on Saturday, November 20.


Wuerttemberg is a wine growing area which is not well known outside of Germany. Wine from Württemberg is mainly red wine. The main production area is along the Neckar river between Stuttgart and Heilbronn and, more wine is consumed here than anywhere else in Germany - actually twice as much as in the rest of Germany. The German poet Friedrich von Schiller wrote already several centuries ago: “A Württemberger without wine--is that a real Württemberger?”

In Württemberg the Trollinger is the most important variety. The Trollinger, with its characteristic bright red color, is grown almost exclusively in Württemberg. It is a typical Vierteleswein (equivalent to a vin ordinaire and so-called because such wines are normally ordered by the quarter liter): fruity, bodied and fresh and goes well with all kinds of dishes. In exceptional years, the fairly ordinary table wine can become a top-quality, but it usually is a good table wine for every-day consumption. There is also Lemberger, which is a better wine.

Wines from Württemberg are hard to find in the US. This is partly explained by the production structure, which is dominated by co-operatives. Much of the wine sector in Württemberg is in the hands of local co-operatives. These co-operatives are known for producing top class wines. But they tend to be less aggressive in terms of penetrating new markets.

The Winners

The list of winners looks a bit unusual. The really big names of the German red wine boom are missing. Rather, one finds young, new winemakers, such as the surprise winner in the category of Pinot Noir, the young Jürgen Krebs from the Pfalz. Two estates from Württemberg , the estate of Prince Hohenlohe-Oehringen and the Staatsweingut Weinsberg won twice. Surprisingly, among the international classics, the winner was neither a Cabernet Sauvignon nor a Merlot or Syrah, but s traditional South Tirol Lagrein, which he has been grown in Germany since 2000.

Spätburgunder (Pinot Noir)

1. Platz: Weingut Krebs, Freinsheim (Pfalz), 2007er Freinsheimer Musikantenbuckel
2. Plätze: Staatsweingut Weinsberg (Württemberg), Weingut Burggarten, Heppingen (Ahr), Weingut Neiss, Kindenheim (Pfalz)

Picture (from right to left): Guenter Baeder, Martin Schwegler, both Staatsweingut Weinsberg, Ute Proellochs, Charim Ungar Contemporary, and Mrs. and Mr. Groebe at the 100th Anniversary of the VDP in Berlin in 2010


1. Platz: Weingut Fürst zu Hohenlohe-Oehringen (Württemberg), 2008er „Ex flammis orior“
2. Platz: Weinmanufaktur Untertürkheim (Württemberg), „Mönch Berthold“
3. Platz: Weingut Rings, Freinsheim (Pfalz), 2008er „Das Kreuz“


1. Platz: Weingut Graf Neipperg, Schwaigern
2. Platz: Weingut Fürst zu Hohenlohe-Oehringen (beide Württemberg)

Deutsche Klassiker (German Classics)

1. Platz: Hedesheimer Hof, Stadecken-Elsheim (Rheinhessen), 2007er St. Laurent
2. Plätze: Weingut Philipp Kuhn, Laumersheim (Pfalz), St. Laurent 2007, Staatsweingut Weinsberg, 2007er Clevner (Frühburgunder)

Internationale Klassiker (International Classics)

1. Platz: Weingut Keller, Worms-Pfiffligheim (Rheinhessen), 2007er Lagrein,
2. Platz: Weingut Stachel, Maikammer (Pfalz), Syrah

Neuzüchtungen (New Grape Varities)

1. Platz: Weingut Karl May, Osthofen (Rheinhessen), 2007er Dornfelder
2. Platz: Weingut Karl Haidle, Kernen-Stetten (Württemberg), 2008er Zweigelt

Unterschätzte Sorten (Underrated Grape Varities)

1. Platz: Weingärtner-Zentralgenossenschaft (WZG) Möglingen (Württemberg), 2009er Portugieser
2. Platz: Weingut Rainer Schnaitmann, Fellbach (Württemberg), 2009er Trollinger

Edelsüße Weine (Noble-Sweet Wines)

1. Platz: Weingut Eckehart Gröhl, Weinolsheim (Rheinhessen), Spätburgunder Blanc de Noirs Eiswein 2009
2. Platz: Winzergenossenschaft Britzingen (Baden), 2009er Trockenbeerenauslese Cabernet Mitos

Schiller Wine - Related Postings

One of the Fathers of the German Red Wine Revolution: Weingut Huber in Baden

In the Glass: A 2007 Pinot Noir from the Gault Millau Shooting Star of the Year - Estate Baron Gleichenstein, Germany

New Classification of New Zealand Pinot Noirs

Zinfandel and other "Italian" Wines of Seghesio Vineyards in California

In the Glass: Pinot Noir from France, Germany and California

The California Pinot Noir Pioneer Walter Schug: From the Rheingau in Germany to Sonoma County in California

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Christian! Yes, I will definately miss the red German wines (though with luck they'll start to catch on in the U.S. and more will be exported here). They are light, food-friendly and with nice fruit flavor. As you know, I esp. like the ones aged in Holzfass to give them that nice smoky texture.

    Otherwise, the "Best Lemberger" from Weingut Graf Neipperg comes as no surprise: