Beloved of wine experts, Riesling is seen as the queen of grapes.
Capable of long evolution, it comes in many styles from light and lemony to rich and honeyed, always with distinctive, fresh, minerality.
The UK is not usually associated with growing Riesling. However, a new estate in Sussex called Rathfinny is currently being planted. It will be the biggest in the UK and will be producing Riesling next year. See a video here.
To learn more about Riesling, join a class in London, with wine expert AnneInVino. Details here.
Some of the best Rieslings in the world come from Alsace, a small country between France and Germany.
On the same latitude as Chablis in Burgundy, the high diurnal shift – temperature swing between hot days and cold nights – is one of the main factors producing top quality wines.
One of the best known producers in Alsace is the family owned Domaine Zind Humbrecht – website here.
Biodynamic since 1977, the owner Olivier believes that producers are paying the price now for decades of mechnisation and that all problems can be solved by careful vineyard management.
In the winery, he states that very slow pressing, lots of skin contact, slow fermentations and many months on the lees (dead yeast cells) give stable results and allow long-ageing wines.
To buy the wines in the UK, see Berry Bros. To read more about biodynamic winemaking, see here.
(photo – Simply Bike / Flickr Creative Commons)