Low temperatures across eastern Europe this week made it possible for the vintners who make Eiswein to finish up their harvests for 2012!

In years past, the harvest can take place much later…sometimes on Christmas or even into the new year, but as Decanter reported earlier this week from Germany, conditions got so cold now that it was time to act!

Producing Eiswein demands a great deal of patience. Grapes which are ripe – but not botrytised – wait on the vines for the arrival of the first frosts.
Producing Eiswein demands a great deal of patience. Grapes which are ripe – but not botrytised – wait on the vines for the arrival of the first frosts.
Ultimately, temperatures that are at around – 7 º C (for at least several hours) will freeze the water crystals in the grapes. This is when the grapes must be harvested and pressed. In the press, the water remains as clumps of ice while only the concentrated must flows out.
Ultimately, temperatures that are at around – 7 º C (for at least several hours) will freeze the water crystals in the grapes. This is when the grapes must be harvested and pressed. In the press, the water remains as clumps of ice while only the concentrated must flows out.
The weather conditions in Austria were perfect to harvest the last grapes in the last days
The weather conditions in Austria were perfect to harvest the last grapes in the last days
Eisweins are recognised by their elegant, piquant fruit and racy acidity. The Austrian wine makers are proud of this extraordinary wine.
Eisweins are recognised by their elegant, piquant fruit and racy acidity. The Austrian wine makers are proud of this extraordinary wine.