A cool climate dominates the Mosel, Saar and Ruwer that is exemplary throughout the wine world. Hang time for the region’s predominant variety, Riesling, is longer in most years than it is in other German wine regions. Riesling often remains on the vine here for 160 days, compared to the 100 days that are considered the classic benchmark elsewhere. This allows grapes plenty of time to accumulate aroma intensity. The three rivers, in particular the Moselle, provide a passive source of warmth to ensure a moderate and stable climate. The rivers also provide good air circulation, sweeping warm air away and allowing cool kabatic air to refresh grapes on the slopes at night.
The landscape here at the 50th degree of latitude is stunning. Extremely steep vineyard sites bank the sharply winding Moselle River. The south-exposed vineyard slopes accumulate heat on hot summer days and dark slate soils accentuate this by functioning like a solar panel. Vines climb the steep slopes to dizzying heights, some with stone terraces, others straight up the fall line trained on individual posts. Vineyard labour is demanding and in some places only possible by hand.
It is somewhat cooler on the Saar and Ruwer. The vineyards are on average more highly elevated and because many of the vineyard sites are located in side valleys, the influence of both rivers is less. Germany’s most famous wine comes from the VDP.GROSSE LAGE® SCHARZHOFBERG. The 2003 SCHARZHOFBERG Riesling Trockenbeerenauslese from VDP.Weingut Egon Müller achieved worldwide the highest price ever for a bottle of wine – 14,566 Eros at the VDP.Mosel Auction of 2015.