Monday, February 6, 2012

The "German Wine Spectator Top 100 List" - Weinwirtschaft: Top 100 Wines in Germany in 2011

Pictures: Christian G.E. Schiller with Philipp Wittmann and Barone Ricasoli, the 2 Runners-up in the White and Red Wine Categories

The German wine journal Weinwirtschaft just released its list of the top 100 wines of the year 2011. It is a bit like the Wine Spectator Top 100 list in the United States: the wines that make it to the list are not the qualitatively best wines, but the best wines according to a combination of several criteria: (1) the tasting results, (2) the price-quality-ratio, (3) how the wine sells and (4) the marketing efforts of the wine producer.

This year, a total of 550 wines competed for the 100 top spots. 40 white wines and 60 red wines made it to the list. They convinced with top quality, good price-quality ratio, a clear retail structure and example-setting marketing. Only wines that sold more than 10.000 bottles in 2011 were included in the contest. That of course left the many smaller top wine makers out of the rating.

Overall, the list is dominated by Old World wines. The German consumers continue to be hesitant to buy New World wines, lead by the assumption that mother nature plays a much smaller role in growing and making the wine in the New World than in the Old World. Not a single wine from the US made it to the list, although I typically find inexpensive American wines on the shelves of the large supermarkets when I am in Germany.

Red Wines

Here are the 3 top wines for 2011.

1: 2009 Fabelhaft Douro Tinto Niepoort; Ardau Weinimport
2: 2009 Brolio Chianti Classico DOCG Barone Ricasoli; Smart Wines
3: 2008 Ornellaia Bolgheri Superiore Tenuta dell'Ornellaia; Schlumberger

The red wine list continues to be dominated by Italy - Germans like Italian food, beaches and wine – although the dominance is less than last year. Disappointingly, only one German red wine made it to the list - the 2007 Gaudenz trocken Pfalz Weingut Knipser – although there is a red wine revolution going on in Germany. Last year. German Pinot Noirs impressed Tim Atkin and others at a tasting in London that has received quite a bit of attention internationally.

White Wines

For the white wines, it is just the opposite. More than 50% of the winning white wines come from Germany. Here are the 3 top wines, all three of them Rieslings from Germany.

1: 2010 Schloss Johannisberg Riesling trocken Gelblack Rheingau Fürst von Metternich-Winneburg'sche Domäne
2: 2010 Riesling trocken, Rheinhessen Weingut Wittmann
3: 2010 Riesling Alte Reben Mosel Weingut Van Volxem

The Complete List

The complete list of the Weinwirtschaft Top 100 Wines 2011 of Germany can be seen here.

Prices are in Euros. 1Euro = 1.30US$.

For earlier years, see:

The 100 Top Wines in Germany in 2008 - Weinwirtschaft 

Weinwirtschaft: Germany's Top 100 Wines 2009

The "German Wine Spectator Top 100 List" - Weinwirtschaft: Top 100 Wines in Germany in 2010

schiller-wine - Related Postings

German and Austrian Wines in the Wine Spectator Top 100 2010

German Spaetlese Wines Can Come in Different Versions. I Have Counted Five.

Phil Bernstein’s Third Annual German Riesling Tasting with the German Wine Society, Washington DC Chapter - Rieslings With a Touch of Sweetness

Visiting Weingut Josef Leitz in Ruedesheim – Johannes Leitz is Germany’s Winemaker of the Year, Gault Millau WeinGuide 2011

When Americans Drink German Wine - What They Choose

Terry Theise's Top German Wines of the 2009 Vintage

Impressions from the Riesling & Co World Tour 2010 in New York

JJ Pruem Goes Supermarket: Meeting Katharina Pruem and Tasting the Incredible JJ Pruem Wines at Wegmans

1st International Riesling Symposium, Rheingau, Germany

The Wines of the Roter Hang (Red Slope) in Nierstein, Rheinhessen, Germany

Best German Dry Riesling - Weinwelt German Riesling Awards 2011 (2010 Vintage)

Best German Wines – Gault Millau WeinGuide Deutschland 2012

The 100 Best German Winemakers 2010 – Handelsblatt online and Vinum

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