Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.

Strohwein returns to Mosel

Published:  23 July, 2008

After almost 40 years, the German authorities, are once again allowing the production of sweet, concentrated wines along the Mosel.

Weingut Stein, in the middle Mosel wine village of Bullay, has received permission from to make straw wine (strohwein).

To gain permission, Ulli Stein, owner of the vineyard, had to lobby the EU to overturn a German court decision upholding the 1971 law, despite other European wine-producing countries - Austria, Italy, and France - being allowed to practice this style of winemaking.

Stein had previously successfully challenged the ban (from 1933-1987) to make red wine in the region.

Stein is naming the wine 'Striehween', using the local Mosel dialect, because Austria has trademarked the term 'strohwein'.

With the 2008 vintage he'll be the first and only wine grower along the Mosel to producethe wine, using plantings of Bacchus and Riesling.

"It's is only fair that our winegrowers have the same rights as other producers in the EU," stated Ansgar Schmitz, director of the Mosel Wine Association. "However, it will most likely be a very small niche, adding a new aspect to the already huge selection of noble sweet wines from the Mosel, Saar, and Ruwer."

The German Wine Law of 1971 had banned this tradition along the Mosel - which had at one time been an area specialized in making wine from ripe grapes dried upon straw mats which, when dehydrated, produced sweet and concentrated wines.