Riesling Facts


"Riesling, the world's finest white wine grape."

                             (Hugh Johnson)


Did you know.....


  • Riesling is not only genetically stable, it reflects its terroir more accurately than any other grape, yet it preserves its identity no matter where it is grown.  "A wonder vine."  (Jancis Robinson) 


  • There are several copy cat grapes that bear little resemblance to the real thing:  Welschriesling (Austria), Olasz Rizling (Hungary), Riesling Italico (Italy), Riesling de Banat (Romania), Riesling-Sylvaner (Germany), Emerald Riesling, Missouri Riesling, Gray Riesling (USA).


  • German immigrants brought Riesling to the New World:  1850 (South Africa), 1857 (California), 1871 (Washington State).


  • Classically grown in Germany and France, even northern Italy but it is also grown in Slovenia, Croatia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia and Uzbekistan.


  • New World surprises that it could keep its acidity in warm climates ------ Australia (Barossa, Clare Valley) next to Shiraz; Chile in San Antonio and Bio Bio.


  • Riesling is the offspring of the Weisser Heunisch (Gouais Blanc) vine, widely grown in Germany in the Middle Ages. The other parent is a cross between a wile vine and Traminer.


  • It is estimated to be the world's 20th most grown grape variety at approximately 50,000 ha...


  • however, in terms of quality, it's in the top three after Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.


  • It's origins could date back as far as the 1300s but a 1435 Rhiingau invoice spelled 'riesslingen'; by 1552 Hieronymus Bock's Latin herbal book cites it growing around the Mosel.


  • For many years Riesling was considered a luxury variety because of its low yields grown only by the church and the aristocracy.


  • The petrol note is said to be caused by the compound 1,1, 6-trimethyl-1, 2 di hydronaphthalene which, during the aging process, is created from carotenoid precursors by hydrolysis.


  • Most widely grown in Germany, Alsace and Austria, but the fastest growing market segment in the United States.


  • Beautiful Rieslings are successfully cultivated in Michigan, Ohio, New York State and Ontario!