Today’s post is dedicated to a more or less unknown and often overseen German grape variety: Scheurebe. In the early 20th century, oenologist Georg Scheu created the grape by crossing Riesling with Bukettraube (a cross between Silvaner and Schiava). Scheu intented to create a Riesling-like grape that was well-suited to be cultivated in Rheinhessen. Scheurebe is considered Germany’s most successful grape crossing.
The variety makes up roughly for 2% of all German vine plantings and is grown in 12 out of Germany’s 14 wine regions. Plantings of Scheurebe are consistently getting less year after year. In 1999 in Germany Scheurebe was grown on 3126 hectares and in 2007 only 1702 hectares of Scheurebe still existed.
During the time that the Nazis ruled over Germany Scheurebe was called Dr. Wagnerrebe after Richard Wagner, a high NSDAP politician. In 1950 the name was changed to Scheurebe but unfortunately sometimes the variety is still called Dr. Wagnerrebe.
Outside of Germany only very little plantings of Scheurebe exist. However, Scheurebe can also be found in Switzerland, Southeast Austria (the region is known as Styria) and South England.
Reichsrat Von Buhl
One of the most well-known producers of Scheurebe is German winery Reichsrat Von Buhl. This prestigious winery is from the Palatinate (Pfalz in German) and produces a large variety of Riesling (everything from sparkling to Trockenbeerenauslese), Scheurebe and Spätburgunder (aka Pinot Noir). Reichsrat von Buhl was founded over 150 years ago (1849) and is still family-owned. Since 2011 all wines from Reichsrat von Buhl are certified organic. The winery decided to switch to organic agriculture in 2008 and states on its website the motivations behind this step: “This step was not motivated only by idealism, but by the conviction that this will help us produce even better qualities”. Reichsrat von Buhl is a member of the German association for Prädikatswein VDP.
Tasting Notes: 2012 Scheurebe Auslese – Prädikatswein Pfalz
In the glass, the wine had a rich golden-yellow color. The label listed alcohol by volume was 7.5%. The wine is classified as Prädikatswein Pfalz. 122g/l residual sugar.
On the nose, Reichsrat von Buhl Scheurebe Auslese was quite intense with aromas of grapefruit, blackcurrant and honey.
In the mouth, off-dry, quite sweet, full-bodied, very smooth and rich. The wine had a soft acidity and was pretty fruit-forward. Notes of gooseberry and black currant. An elegant wine with a persistently long finish.
The wine is bottled in 0.375liters bottles. In Munich the wine retails for 14.90€. Not a steal but still a good QPR. Reichsrat von Buhl Scheurebe Auslese is best served after dinner but pairs also well with very spicy Thai food.
I am wondering how this Auslese will taste in 10 years. My latest experience with an aged Auslese was exceptional. I will definitely pick up a few more bottles of Reichsrat von Buhl Scheurebe Auslese but I already know that it is going to be a struggle not to open them right away.
What’s your experience with Scheurebe? Have you ever tasted it? Care to share your thoughts about Scheurebe in the comment section below?