When you hear wine, you probably think of countries like France or Italy, but not Germany, where all people are said to be drinking is beer. However, there are some really good local wines that you should try while in Germany. If you are a passionate wine connoisseur, I can heartily recommend my home town in the heart of Germany, which is the small city of Würzburg, a one-hour drive from Frankfurt and a stop on the beautiful Romantic Road. You can immediately recognize it by its impressive Fortress Marienberg, which is situated beautifully on a hill overlooking the town and surrounded by vineyards where some of the country’s best wines are made.
Among the places you must visit if you love good wine is the Juliusspital, a medieval wine cellar which is a picturesque and historically significant place to taste the local Frankenwein. At the Canberra International Riesling Challenge in 2007, the Juliusspital Wine Estate won the award for the best Riesling of the World with its ‘2006 Julius-Echter-Berger Beerenauslese’. And there are countless other wines to try while walking though the vineyards during the harvest, among them Müller-Thurgau and Silvaner, which are dry, fruity white wines. And while you’re at it, you can also try German Sekt, a sparkling white wine much like champagne.
And the Main region is not only worth a visit during the harvest. When you come here in the months from April to June, you can taste another well-loved dish of this region, which is white asparagus. Why not hire a bike and drive along the Main river, buying a bag of asparagus (you can choose from countless little family-run businesses on the riverside who sell it at this time of year) and a bocksbeutel of local wine on the way; this is also a great chance to practice your German language skills with the locals! When you come home tired and exhausted, you can have a lovely dinner of asparagus and boiled potatoes with slices of ham and herb butter, which is really delicious.
As I am studying in this lovely city I often have a stroll through the romantic cobblestoned streets and whenever we have something to celebrate, we have dinner in a beautiful little restaurant in the picturesque Old Town, preferably Schäufele, a traditional Franconian dish made of roast pork with rind that is crispy and golden brown, served with potato dumplings, gravy and red cabbage. In winter there is nothing better then when you come from a long walk in snow into the cosy warmth of the restaurant and spend an evening enjoying a delicious dinner and a splendid wine at the fireside.