The SOMM Journal

August / September 2015

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 98 of 132

98 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2015 { discoveries } FAIRYTALE CASTLES, JUICY BRATS AND DELICATE Riesling top the list of Germany's greatest assets. However, for in-the-know wine aficionados, Spätburgunder ranks first. The impetus behind my recent deep dive into German Pinot Noir sprang from researching an article on climate change and its current and projected effects on the world's vineyards. In marginal regions, many of which exist in Germany, temperature increases over the last decade have improved ripeness levels and delivered growers more consistent harvests. Translation: Thin, green reds are fast becoming a relic of Germany's past. To decode regional differences and uncover the best Pinots available Stateside, I solicited several New York somms to help taste 26 samples sourced by Wines of Germany. Gathering at Aureole in Midtown, the domain of Wine Director Carrie Lyn Strong, we were joined by German-born Doreen Winkler, founder and President of Diamond Sommelier Services, to evaluate bottles from seven major areas, including the two most prolific, Baden and Pfalz. Germany is the third-largest producer of Pinot Noir in the world after France and California, marking its potential to become the next hotspot for this seductive grape, yet it remains a relative secret outside of its home turf. A recent scouring of Manhattan, the gateway for European wine into the U.S. and nerve center for sommeliers and tastemakers, testified to the category's dearth of progress in capturing the industry's attention. Only a handful of retailers stocked noteworthy bottles, and a polling of the city's top wine directors uncov- ered few with selections on their lists. One sommelier defensively asserted Spätburgunder A Spate of Spätburgunder DECODING REGIONAL DIFFERENCES IN GERMANY'S PINOT NOIRS by Lauren Mowery / photos by Lisa Ramsey A selection of German Spätburgunders—aka Pinot Noirs—for our exploratory tasting at Aureole in NYC. Author Lauren Mowery finds "vivid cherry and blackberry flavors, nervy acidity and the Old World's hallmark earthiness" in German Pinot Noir.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The SOMM Journal - August / September 2015