The harvest of these wines is very rare as it only occurs during the first hard frost that freezes the last of the grapes that remain on the vine. The grapes are then picked and pressed frozen so very little water gets into the press and only a small amount of highly concentrated juice is extracted. The result is an extraordinary bond between sweetness and acidity.
Golden yellow to amber in the glass with strong intensity on the nose. It is exotic with aromas of tropical fruits. The palate is voluminous and essence rich on the palate.
For four generations the Thomas Schmitt Family has produced some of Germany’s most respected Rieslings. The head of the Schmitt family today is Thomas Schmitt. He is a leader in the Riesling renaissance, and the number one importer of Rieslings into the U.S.
Apart from the classics, we find many regional gems of different styles.
Late harvest wines are probably the easiest to understand. Grapes are picked so late that the sugars build up and residual sugar remains after the fermentation process. Ice wine, a style founded in Germany and there referred to as eiswein, is an extreme late harvest wine, produced from grapes frozen on the vine, and pressed while still frozen, resulting in a higher concentration of sugar. It is becoming a specialty of Canada as well, where it takes on the English name of ice wine.
Vin Santo, literally “holy wine,” is a Tuscan sweet wine made from drying the local white grapes Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia in the winery and not pressing until somewhere between November and March.