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RieslingPhoto: Deutsches Weininstitut
Riesling. Riesling is considered the king of white wines. Hardly any other grape variety combines complex aromas with minerality, elegance and finesse to the same extent. Riesling was first mentioned in a document in 1435. The grape variety from the Upper Rhine, a natural cross (Traminer x Vitis vinifera subsp. sylvestris) x Heunisch was initially unable to establish itself on a large scale in German viticulture due to its low yields and late ripening. The decisive turning point came in 1787. The Elector of Trier, Clemens Wenzeslaus of Saxony, decreed that only “good vines” were to be cultivated in his domain. Some sources state that Wenzeslaus himself explicitly ordered the planting of Riesling. However, this is not correct. In the wording of the decree, there is only the request to eradicate a type of vine known as “rheinisch” within seven years. It is only in various implementing regulations to the decree that, among others, the grape variety Riesling is mentioned. Riesling prefers a cooler climate and therefore feels particularly at home in Germany. Almost a quarter of Germany's vineyards are planted with Riesling.