March 2014 Meeting - Wines from Bingen-am-Rhein

For our March meeting Lynn and Graham chose a great selection of wines from Hitchin’s twin town of Bingen-am-Rhein in the German Rheinhessen region...

Specifically, all the wines came from one wine producer “Hemmes”  The theme of this presentation is to show the range of different wines that can come from a single place and producer.

Hemmes is a family firm, currently in its third generation of wine producers. The business which includes a wine school, is housed in the former Binger-Kempten village school. The vineyard includes several different soil types “Löss” (loam), “Quartit” (quartzite) and “Schiefer” (shale), which can lead to the different wine characteristics. There are also several different grape varieties and production methods.

The Wines


Glühwein is a mulled & spiced wine served hot and a favourite at German Christmas markets. However the quality can be truly awful, a good indicator of poor quality is when bowls of sugar are available to counter sourness. It can come as a red or white wine, this one is a nice red.

Alcohol content 12%, price 4.00€ £3.45 (per litre).

Filippo Secco

A fresh and fruity semi sparkling white wine, ideal for a warm summer’s day in the garden.  

Alcohol content 11.5%, price 5.80€ £5.00.

Huxelrebe Spätelese

A gold medal winning, sweeter white wine. Spätelese wines are sweet due to the late harvesting of the grape.

Alcohol content 11%, price 5.00€ £4.31.

Riesling Trocken

Quartzite lends this white wine a mineral character, with fine lemon and lime aromas. Recommended to be drunk with chicken and lime risotto. This wine is best served between 8 and 10 degrees C.

Alcohol content 12%, price 6.80€ £5.86.

St. Laurent Trocken

A gold medal red Merlot & Regent wine. The wine is so named because the grapes start to take on their colour on the 10th of August which is St Laurent’s day. Enjoy the aroma of forest fruits and black cherries, ideal with pork, lamb or game.

 Alcohol content 12%, price 5.30€ £4.57.


A gold medal red Cabinet Sauvignon wine, traditionally pulp fermented, and then matured in a pressure barrel before filtering very gently to preserve the complexity and full bodied nature of the wine for bottling. This wine is best served between 16 and 18 degrees C.

Alcohol content 13.5%, price 9.80€ £8.45.

Silvaner Eiswein

Ice wine is a type of dessert wine produced from grapes that have been frozen while still on the vine. Regionally there is an official declaration of the authority to harvest the Eiswein after a frost deemed sufficiently severe. The sugars and other dissolved solids do not freeze, but the water does, allowing a more concentrated grape must to be pressed from the frozen grapes, resulting in a smaller amount of more concentrated, very sweet wine.

Alcohol content 8.5%, price 14.00€ £12.07 (1/2 bottle).