Riesling
: Germany

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

As outlined in german history, Riesling is by no means the oldest documented vine variety grown in Germany (including, as it did for so long, Alsace). elbling and silvaner were widely grown throughout the Middle Ages, while räuschling was the speciality of Baden in the south. An invoice dated 1435, from a castle in the extreme south east of the Rheingau on the river Main, mentions ‘riesslingen in die wingarten’, presumably Rieslings in the vineyard. Early spellings of words like Riesling have to be treated with care, since the similarly named Räuschling was so much more common then than today, but Riesling seems to have been recognized as a top-quality variety from the late Middle Ages and was planted throughout the Rhine and Mosel from the middle of the 16th century.