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Wine Spectator School

Class 6: Traveling the Old World


Key Grape Variety

Riesling, with its complex flavors and ageability, produces the best wines in every region. These wines show lovely floral aromas, flavors of citrus, peach, spice and honey, crisp acidity and low alcohol.


Key Areas

The Mosel is Germany's coldest region, and both the sweet and dry wines have crisp, sometimes bracingly high acidity. The best-known villages are Erden, Urzig, Graach, Wehlen, Bernkastel and Piesport.

When the Rheingau is at its best, no region packs more power into its product; these are spicy, medium- to full-bodied, lush wines noted for their longevity.

Rheinhessen produces fruitier wines with lower acidity. The best vineyards around Nierstein make superb wines.

Nahe wines fall between the fuller Rheingau and leaner Mosel styles. Wines have carried the Nahe designation only since the...

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