Tag Archives: German wine

What Makes Wine Age Well?

Cheese, balsamic vinegar, and wine are examples of just a few items in a human’s diet that get better with age. 

We have to ask, though, what makes wine age well?

First, it’s important to note that because of the production process, all wine is aged to a certain extent. While certain red wines progress through the fermentation stage for years, white wines typically do not need as much time before they are bottled and sold. 

So, how can you determine which wines will age well?

One way to determine this, according to Binwise, is to pay attention to the wine’s sugar content. The higher the sugar content, the better wine will do with time. Ports and dessert wines tend to have much higher sugar levels and can age well for up to 100 years!

Higher levels of acidity can also help a wine age better and last longer. The longer a wine ages, the more it loses its acidity and “flattens,” so starting with higher levels will help it last for the long haul. 

After the wine is bottled, certain chemical reactions occur through aging and result in the formation of phenolic compounds. Tannins, the most popular for these compounds, alter the character of the wine, including mouth feel, flavor profile, color, and aroma. Wines with higher levels of tannins that are also well-balanced will smooth out over time. 

In non-fortified wines, alcohol levels can cause the wine to turn vinegary at a much faster rate. In general, the lower the alcohol level (13.5% or below) in non-fortified wines will age the best, while an ABV percentage of 17-20% in fortified wines will last the longest.

If you’re looking for varietals to age in a collection, we recommend the following from King Frosch:

Specialty Wines:

Reds:

Whites: 

The chart below is also a useful tool to help you determine which wines will age well, and which should probably be enjoyed immediately.  

Sources:

How to Age Wine & the Best Wines to Age | Aged Wine Guide

4 Traits of Wines That Age Well

Drunk, In Love, Or Both?

Happy Valentines Day, everyone! We’ve all heard the saying “drunk in love,” and if you’ve ever experienced love or drunkenness, you might be able to draw some similarities between the two feelings. Both make you feel blissful, rather invincible, and when the effects wear off, sad or depressed. As it turns out, a study published in a 2015 edition of the Neuroscience and Behavioral Reviews explores the effects of both oxytocin (also known as the love hormone,) and alcohol on the brain. What resulted were nearly identical results!

Oxytocin is released during skin to skin contact, and is why physical contact with someone else feels good. Alcohol has similar effects, but instead of natural production by the body, it is the product of sugar, fermenting yeast, and starches. Both of these compounds cause lowered inhibitions and help people take that “leap of faith,” also known as “Dutch courage.” 

So, we hope you enjoy your Valentines Day and maybe even experience a bit of that “drunk in love feeling,” whichever way you choose to achieve it!

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Valentines Day Special

Dessert Wine Special

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What Is Icewine?

Icewine, or Eiswein, is a particularly special type of wine because it is produced under specific conditions. Though there are several variations to the origin story of icewine, they all claim that the first instance of this delicious dessert beverage was found in Germany. According to one story, an annual frost in the late 1700s struck early, before the winemaker could harvest his crop. Despite his fears of a lost year, he pressed the frozen grapes and fermented the juice. What resulted was a smaller, but sweeter yield.

Today, modern icewine making is slightly more scientific compared to how it was done during the 18th century. Grapes are left on the vines until the temperature reaches a range between -10 and -12 degrees Celsius. The grapes are then harvested and pressed (an operation that generally takes place overnight.) Because they are frozen, most of their yield is icey water, but a small portion, approximately 15%, is highly concentrated, sweet, juice. 

Typical flavors you can expect from icewines are rich, tropical fruits including lychee, papaya, and pineapple. We recommend serving your icewine chilled, either alone as a dessert, or drizzled over pound cake, ice cream, or fruit with whipped cream!

Shop our Icewines and Dessert Wines!

#18 Scheurebe Icewine

#19 Ortega TBA Late Select Harvest

#194 Diamond Series Chardonnay Icewine

References

Hancock. (2021). Everything you need to know about icewine. Retrieved 26 January 2021, from https://www.thedrinksbusiness.com/2018/10/everything-you-need-to-know-about-icewine/

Ice Wine, You’re So Fine (A Detailed Guide) | Wine Folly. (2021). Retrieved 26 January 2021, from https://winefolly.com/deep-dive/ice-wine-youre-so-fine/

What Is Gewürztraminer Wine?

Origin and History

The Gewürztraminer grape is one of 18 classic noble grapes. It is a mutation of either the traminer grape from the village of Tramin in South Tyrol, or the savagnin, the parent grape of sauvignon blanc. Sources are a bit fuzzy on this point, but what we do know is that it is one of the oldest grapes in the wine world. The grape is white with pink skins and is commonly grown in Alsace, a region on the border of France and Germany.2 Because it needs a cool climate in order to develop aromas and the vine is particularly susceptible to disease, Gewürztraminer is difficult to grow. Scientists have even attempted to cross the grape with other varietals to strengthen it, but none have been successful thus far.3

Flavors

Gewürztraminer gets its name from the term Gewürz, which in German means “herb.” The wine is famous for its traditionally high alcohol content and strong, tropical aromas including lychee, pineapple, melon, ginger, rose petals, and even smoke.

Pairings

When pairing the wine with foods, you can try a wide variety of cuisines and flavors, from sweet, to spicy, to salty because of its low acidity and sweet or off-dry taste.2 This means that these wines are perfect for just about any occasion, from brunch to your Thanksgiving dinner!

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1 Gewurztraminer Wine. (2020). Retrieved 21 November 2020, from https://www.wine-searcher.com/grape-187-gewurztraminer

2 Meyer, T. (2020). What Gewurztraminer tastes like: Wines to change your mind. Retrieved 21 November 2020, from https://www.decanter.com/wine-reviews-tastings/what-is-gewurztraminer-like-300561/

3 Suckling, J. (2020). Gewürztraminer Wine: History, Tasting Notes, and Pairings. Retrieved 21 November 2020, from https://www.masterclass.com/articles/gewurztramine-wine-history-tasting-notes-and-pairings#what-is-gewrztraminer

4 Gewürztraminer Wine Guide. (2020). Retrieved 21 November 2020, from https://winefolly.com/deep-dive/gewurztraminer-wine-guide/

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#610 Gewürztraminer, Dry

#611 Gewürztraminer, Semi Dry

#612 Gewürztraminer Semi Sweet

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