Germany Vintage Report 2007 / The phenomena of climate change and the resulting global warming also affected the year 2007. Once again, meteorological observations made it possible to establish record data: after a winter that was clearly too mild, the Spring weather in April and May was extremely warm. Additionally, although summer was often not very "summer", temperatures recorded during the growing season were the highest since record keeping began (1884), even breaking the record set in 2003.
Naturally, these climatic conditions had a considerable impact on the vines. A very hot April led to an extremely early explosion. Warm temperatures continued into May, so the vines flowered during the second half of the month – the earliest flowering since time immemorial. The heat lasted until early June and by mid-June the vegetation was more than three weeks ahead of schedule. The rather average weather during the rest of the summer reduced this lead. Nevertheless, the grapes began to ripen in the Rheingau on August 3 – precisely from the “record year” 2003. The difference is that the development of the grapes (after early flowering) continued more slowly and evenly , thanks to a better distribution of sunshine and precipitation than in 2003.
Due to this perfect weather regime, the vines had an optimal supply of water and nutrients, and despite the relatively early harvest (due to early flowering), the Riesling grapes could remain on the vines for a long time – an important factor for this grape variety.
Even the earliest harvested grapes had exceptionally high extract values (even higher than in 2005 and 2006) and showed perfect physiological maturity and well-developed aromas. As such, the early harvest yielded fine Kabinett and light Spätlese qualities which will be bottled as Qualitätswein (Gutsriesling).
Overall, ideal weather conditions allowed us to smoothly extend the harvest over seven weeks and selectively harvest the best grapes for the other Prädikat wines. For the 19th year in a row, we were able to harvest all Prädikat, including Trockenbeerenauslese with up to 256 degrees Oechsle, at our Grand Cru sites Kiedricher Gräfenberg and Kiedricher Turmberg.
In addition to the exceptionally high quality of the 2007 vintage, the wonderful climatic conditions of the year allowed us to obtain a higher yield. After five short years, this brings us back to our long-term average.