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There’s More to German Wine Than Riesling


Stein Mosel Rosé Trocken 2019 $21.99

Ulrich Stein’s wines are among the most interesting and idiosyncratic I’ve seen from the Mosel region. I love them. This is made from pinot noir, along with some of the few cabernet sauvignon and merlot vines in the region. It’s typical of Stein’s sense of intuition and experimentation to blend these grapes, which have no historical basis together, to make a rosé. This is light enough to drink poolside in the hot sun, yet full of flavor and character. (Vom Boden)

Credit…Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

Kraemer Franken Silvaner 2017 $21.99

I love silvaner, a perennially underrated grape. It can make straightforward, delightfully refreshing wines that are perfect for a warm-weather lunch. Beyond that, dedicated producers are exploring its potential. Stephan Kraemer is one of those producers, as is Stefan Vetter (see below). This bottle, however is Mr. Kraemer’s entry-level wine, made simply of organically grown silvaner, fermented in steel tanks and not filtered or clarified. It’s subtle and delicious. (A Fatboy Selection/Super Glou, Los Angeles)

Credit…Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

2Naturkinder Kleine Heimat Landwein 2017 $24.96

As you might guess from the name of the winery, 2Naturkinder (meaning two children of nature), this is a natural wine, farmed organically and made without additives. Kleine Heimat is also made with the silvaner grape, although in a different style than the Kraemer. The husband-and-wife proprietors, Micheal Völker and Melanie Drese, allow the juice of these grapes to ferment with the skins for a week as if it were a red wine, deriving a bit of color and structure. In other words, it’s an orange wine, with a slightly amber cast and a bare hint of tannin. It’s richer and rounder than the Kraemer, lively, refreshing and pure. (Jenny & François Selections, New York)

Credit…Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

Holger Koch Spätburgunder Kaiserstuhl 2018 $25.99

Spätburgunder is the German word for pinot noir. You’ll see both the German and the French term used on German pinot noirs, depending on the producer’s preference. Holger and Gabriele Koch make exquisite wines in the Baden region. This spätburgunder is sheer, graceful and juicy, with stony, earthy red berry flavors that are both lip-smacking and thought-provoking. (A Fatboy Selection/Super Glou)

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