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Germany

The scent of wine, oh how much more agreeable, laughing, praying, celestial and delicious it is than that of oil!
[ FRANCOIS RABELAIS ]

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The population of Germany is 82,422,299.

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Germany is a nation that until a few years ago, was divided into two parts, West and East Germany. Reunited since 1990, it is now one of the largest, most populated and productive countries in Europe. Germany has many vibrant cities with amazing architecture, fabulous shopping and a pulsating nightlife, as well as enchanting medieval villages and friendly wine communities. Large varieties of festivals are held year-round and can be found throughout the country. The picturesque countryside is perfect for taking walks, hiking or simply relaxing among nature. The castles, palaces and abbeys are the epitome of German romanticism. It is a place where you can be a sport spectator or take part in a sport. It is also home to many special retreats that specialize in wellness and relaxation. Germany’s regional specialties are a culinary treat for those who visit. One can indulge in several of the local dishes, including dozens of sausages, spatzel and a large variety of fresh meats, poultry, fish, fresh produce and scrumptious desserts. It is suggested that you arrive hungry for dinner because a typical German dinner consists of an average of seven courses. It’s also important to remember Germany’s fame to beer and pretzels, and its beloved Mercedes Benz and BMW. This is a country that knows how to have fun and do it in style.

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G e r m a n y i s c o n s i d e r e d o n e o f t h e w o r l d ’s t o p p r o d u c e r s o f e l e g a n t w h i t e w i n e s

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GERMANY TERROIR
Germany, “Tafelwein” and/or “Landwein,” and a quality wine category. Tafelwein and Landwien are very inexpensive table wines, and the quality wine category is divided into two sub-categories. Ninety-five percent of all German wine is “quality wine.” The sub categories are QbA or Qualitatswein bestimmter Anbaugebiete, and QmP or Qualitatwwein mit Pradikat. The QbA wines are grown and produced in one of Germany’s thirteen official wine regions, and again are inexpensive, everyday wines. Wine in the QmP group are the highest quality of German wines. Kabinett, Spatlese, Auslese, Beerenauslese, Trockenbeerenauslese and Eiswein

Beautiful Johannesburg is the heart of Germany’s wine country. Up until the twentieth century, other than France, Germany was the Supreme European wine area, known for producing outstanding wines. It is widely believed that German wines are sweet wines; however, the majority of wine produced in Germany is bone dry. Due to Germany’s unique Terroir, there is no other place on the planet that can produce such rare, exquisite and almost colorless white wines worthy of spectacular flavor, clarity and character. Because Germany’s wine region is located so far north, the climate is often cool and damp. Grapevines are planted on steep, shear, mountainous slopes that face south, to catch as much sun as possible during the course of the day. The slate and basalt soil are also unique, and retain good amounts of heat, helps the grapes to mature and ripen. Germany’s step mountain grapevines are extremely difficult to harvest. The majority of the harvest is completed by women, who can be spotted scaling the steep vineyards with baskets strapped to their backs. German vineyard owners often name their vineyards with amusing little names like “Goldtropfchen,” meaning “Little raindrops of gold.” The leading German wines are Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Muller-Thurgau, Rieslaner, Rulander, Scheurebe, Silvaner, Spatburgunder, Weissburgunder and Sekt, which is a sparkling wine. There are two major categories of wine in

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are wines of this category. Eiswein is made from very ripe frozen grapes, creating a wine that is not only very sweet, but also very acidic, making a sensational very rare and very expensive desert wine. Germany’s most important wine region is Mosel-Saar Ruwer. The most wonderful, evanescent, transparent and incredible palate pleasing wines are produced in this beautiful, mystic Mosel River area. The steepest vineyard in the entire world is located near the village of Eller, on the Mosel River, and sports a 76-degree vertical wall of vines. While looking up at the steep vineyard, it is hard to imagine how any grapevine could survive. These vineyards not only survive, but also produce world-class fruit. It truly is a sight to behold. The Rheingau has the reputation for being historically the longest producing wine region in Germany that makes quality wine. The grape of the land is Riesling, with more that 80 percent of the total acreage planted with this grape. The sun is stronger than in the Mosel River region, with a vast mixture of loess, loam and quartzite soil that creates pleasant wines. The Pfalz region is the most exciting and inventive wine region in Germany today. Pfalzers have their own way of doing things when it comes to growing grapes and making wine. The Pfalz winemakers make more great wines from more varieties of grapes than winemakers anywhere else in Germany. Alsatian wines shine in this region. The Rheinhessen is Germany’s largest producing area, with over 65,000 acres planted. Most of the wine is average, but it depends on where you stand. There are some good premium wines to be tasted along this region. The wine regions of Ahr, Baden, Franken, Mittelrhein, and Nahe are also wonderful places to visit and taste wine, but are considered to have less important, nondescript wines. However, good wines for great prices can still be found.

Wine improves with age – the older I get, the better I like it.
[ ANONYMOUS ]

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The majority of fine German wines are not sweet.

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F R A N K F U RT
Frankfurt also has many great historical sites and anelectric nightlife. The city offers a wide range of magical river cruises, and has many spectacular shopping centers and boutiques. Sporting events, the opera and a magnificent theater district are also within easy access. It is the gateway into the most important German wine regions and the surrounding villages that dot the countryside along the Rhine. Its international airport is a great place to connect to other German cities and the neighboring countries. And if you happen to get stuck at the mega-airport, there is a nightclub, art gallery and a cinema to help tick away your transit hours.

Located on the Main River, Frankfurt is the financial and transportation center of Germany, as well as one of the two largest financial centers in continental Europe. The city contains the tallest skyscraper in the European Union and is home to many cultural and educational institutions, such as the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University. Frankfurt has many famous museums, fine art facilities and is known for its beautiful botanical garden, Palmengarten. During World War II, the city was heavily bombed, destroying its medieval city center. In turn, it created the modern and efficient city it is today. You will find over 3000 restaurants with a fare from over 70 countries, boasting excellent quality at reasonable prices. The population is largely diverse with only one third of the people actually being citizens of Germany. One of the most popular ways to spend time in Germany, is to visit an Apple Wine Tavern (or Cider Pubs). While there, you will be served plates of “Handkas,” which are strong but flavorful dishes of cheese and onions, accompanied with a pitcher of Frankfurt’s own apfelwein (apple wine).

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A Night at the Musikverien
Spend an evening in one of the most famous concert halls in the world. The Musikverien is home to the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, and is famous for its New Year’s Day concerts and other classical performances. The grand concert hall was built in 1870 and is as spectacular today, as it was on its opening day. Absorb the lovely and elegant sites as you listen to Mozart’s greatest hits, with a compulsory finish that includes Strauss’ Blue Danube and Radetzky March. The concert hall is open yearround with an amazing list of performances.
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Danube Canal Bicycle Path

Jump on your bicycle and hit the petals as you enjoy the beautiful sites of Vienna. Your bike adventure begins at the edge of the Danube River and takes you into the center of Vienna. Set your own pace and go for as long as you desire. Bike over beautiful bridges and soar through magical gardens and parks. The Vienna bicycle path is a perfect way to see all the major sites both in the metro and outside of Vienna’s city limits.

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Melk to Krems via the Danube
Explore Melk’s magnificent Baroque Benedictine monastery that is perched on a rock overlooking the Danube. Then board a riverboat for a wonderful journey on the river as you make your way to Krems. See the famous sites of St. Michael, Spitz and the Devils Wall. When you arrive in Krems, enjoy the different architectural styles of the homes in Krems and the surrounding villages known as Krems-Und-Stein. If you wish, your journey continues strolling the streets, ruins and castles in the beautiful village of Durnstein.
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