Saar, Mosel, Germany
Perhaps the most intriguing and picturesque landscape in all of Germany’s wine country lies along the peaceful banks of the Mosel (which used to be listed as Mosel-Saar-Ruwer on labels until the 2007 vintage). The Mosel River stretches from its spring in the French Vosges along the Luxemburg border for almost 320 miles northeast, where it finally empties into the Rhine near the quaint town of Koblenz. The Saar and the Ruwer serve as its two tributaries along the way and are part of the overall Mosel wine region.
The Mosel is considered to be Germany's oldest wine growing region with production dating back to Roman times. It is also considered the world's steepest wine growing region with over 50% of vineyards situated at inclines of over 30°. It is home to the world's steepest vineyard, the Bremmer Calmont, which has an incline of 65°.
While wine production has existed here for many centuries, the cultivation and harvest has always remained problematic. The mechanization that has made the lives of vintners in other parts of the world so much easier has proven difficult or impossible to apply to many of the Mosel's steep slopes. Wine production here is a tough, backbreaking job and, in that way, little has changed in the last 2000 years. From pruning and weeding to the harvest itself, most of the work is still done by hand.
2019 is an exceptional vintage in Germany. It’s a vintage that has both excellent ripeness and bright, crisp acidity. It was not the easiest vintage; the weather patterns were more extreme than previous years and varied from region to region and even village to village. The harvest required quick decision making and long days but the hard work resulted in a beautiful array of wines. Across Germany, it’s a vintage that shows great range and depth. The wines from 2019 are a pleasure to drink now and will develop gracefully for decades.