Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

Ortega was once popular as an oechsle booster in German wines, especially with the blenders of Rheinhessen. This cross of Müller-Thurgau and Siegerrebe produces extremely full-flavoured wines that often lack acidity but can reach high must weights, if not quite as high as the equally early-ripening but less widely planted optima. Varietal wines are made, but a little goes a long way. The vine does not have good disease resistance, however, and its susceptibility to coulure and rot leaves Optima the more obvious choice for the Mosel. Germany’s total plantings dropped from around 1,200 ha/2,960 acres in the the late 1980s to 561 ha in 2012. The variety is also quite popular in england, for obvious reasons.