17.01.12 | When frost is actually welcomeIcewine at last: list-updateAs winter-high "Cooper" visits Germany coming down from Siberia and brings us the first real winter period, the Icewine-harvest becomes possible in more areas.
This morning word came from Germany's Saale-Unstrut region, stating that last night temperatures around -12°C (~10°F) there were some deeply frozen grapes for Icewine harvested.
Sugar contents of up to sensational 221° Oechsle were measured.
Unlike 2010, this winter seemed to be passing without noticeable winter temperatures, snow or frost. And with the temperatures coming no way near the necessary – 7 °C
(~ 19 ° F), time was already running out for the famous German Icewines.
Last night finally there was a significant temperature drop in many regions of Germany. The frost is crucial for the grapes, since they have to be frozen to develop the typical Icewine taste.
We are getting word from vintners that in the following regions Icewine harvest was possible last night:
- Gregor & Thomas Schätzle winery in Vogtsburg-Schelingen (Pinot Gris Icewine)
- Reiss winery, in Würzburgs (vineyard Pfaffenberg)
- Regional Office for Wine- and Gardening Veitshöchheim (Himmelstadt)
- Rothermel winery, in Heppenheim-Erbach ("Heppenheimer Maiberg", 200° Oechsle)
- Karthäuserhof winery, Eitelsbach at Ruwer River)
- Steffen-Prüm winery, in Maring Bernkastel-Kues, vineyard "Sonnenuhr" (Riesling Icewine, 150 degree Oechsle)
- Becker-Steinhauer winery, konnte am 3. Februar 180 Liter der Lage "Mülheimer Sonnenlay" mit 220 Grad Öchsle lesen.
- Peter König winery in Assmannshausen (162 degree Oechsle, vineyard Höllenberg
- Reiner Flick winery in Wicke (vineyard "Nonnberg")
- Bretz winery in Bechtolsheim, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay und Riesling, 135 und 140 degree Oechsle
- Fluhr winery, Biebelnheim, Silvaner + Riesling, 130° degree Oechsle
- Ralf Christ winery in Flonheim, Silvaner, Chardonnay und Scheurebe, zwischen 150 und 160° degree Oechsle
- Rudolf Fauth winery in Udenheim, Chardonnay, 140° degree Oechsle
- Manz winery in Weinolsheim, Silvaner, 145° degree Oechsle
- Pitthan winery in Zotzenheim, Silvaner, 150° degree Oechsle
- Langenwalter-Gauglitz winery in Freinsheim (rare grape variety Gewuerztraminer, Kerner and Pinot Gris)
- Hochdörffer winery in Landau-Nußdorf (grape variety Cabernet mitos and Riesling)
- Frey winery in Essingen (grape variety Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Scheurebe, Gewuerztraminer and Muskateller, 160 degree Oechsle)
- Herrenberg St. Martin winery - Schneider Family - in St. Martin (grape variety Riesling, 135 degree Oechsle, vineyard "St. Martiner Schloß Ludwigshöhe").
- Hey winery in Naumburg
- Zahn winery in Grossheringen
Weingärtnergenossenschaft Heuholz eG (vinter association) harvested frozen Riesling-grapes with some 20 helpers. The extracted juices smells of Jonagold-apples (136 degree Oechsle).
Due to the long time the grapes had to spend on the vine before they could finally be harvested, the yields are extremely low. Because very strict selection of the grapes is necessary, vintners can only collect a couple of hundred liters, so 2011 icewine will remain quite rare. The sugar levels are of course very high, reaching up to 160 degrees Oechsle (°Oe).
A small Icewine-vintage does not puzzle vintners, though. Since in 2010 the Icewine harvest took place in early November, there is a good amount of Icewine waiting in German Wine Cellars to meet the demand.