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Learn About German Wine

glasses of German wine

To learn about German wine, you have to go back—far back—in history, all the way to the ancient Roman empire. Roman conquerors first brought wine and winemaking from Italy to parts of Germany around the first century. German monks tended those grapes and vineyards through the Middle Ages. Today, German winemakers have carried that storied tradition forward to make the country one of the preeminent wine-producing regions in the world.

German Wine Varietals

Today, German growers produce more than 140 types of grapes. The country ranks fourth in Europe and seventh in the world in terms of overall wine production.

Most of the grapes grown in Germany are white wine grapes, which are used to make riesling. While riesling is the country’s most well-known wine, more German winemakers are working to diversify their country’s offerings. In fact, Germany is currently the third largest producer of pinot noir.

Other German wine varietals include:

One of the best ways to introduce yourself to German wines is to grab a bottle of riesling—the varietal the country is best known for. Try one of our favorites:

Schmitt Sohne Riesling

Distinctive in its blue bottle, Schmitt Sohne Riesling is a great medium-bodied riesling that lands firmly on the palate with peach and apple tones. Pair it with a seared pork chop.

Starling Castle Riesling

An equal mix of tree fruit and citrus notes, Starling Castle Riesling is on the crisp side. Try it paired with a mildly flavored cheese plate.

Cupcake German Riesling

Cupcake German Riesling cheers the tabletop with a blue bottle and yellow screw top. Inside, this riesling has a citrusy bent that has more zing than sweetness. Sip alongside a favorite summer fish entrée.

Fünf Riesling

Inside the contemporary (and unbreakable) white bottle and blue screw top, Fünf Riesling (German for "five") is a lighter option that's easily sipped on its own or with a summer salad.

German Wine Regions and Growing Conditions

Germany is the northernmost European climate that's able to grow wine grapes. German wine regions are concentrated in southwest Germany, as well as a smaller region near the east-center of the country. See map below:

German wine regions

German Wine Labels and Terms

Every German wine bottle label is required to contain certain information about how the wine was made and what it tastes like. On the label, you'll find:

  • Producer vs. bottler
  • Vintage/year of harvest
  • Grape varietal
  • Ripeness category
  • Dryness level
  • Village and vineyard of harvest
  • Growing region
  • Approval number

Check out all the German wines Publix has to offer.

Publix promotes responsible drinking and supports efforts to fight alcohol abuse and underage drinking. Please visit the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility at for more information.