Lemberger, of late maturation, probably has its origins in the vineyards of the lower Danube. In the 19th century, a "Society for the Improvement of Wine" of the Kingdom of Württemberg decided to reduce the cultivation of various mass-produced vines in the region and encouraged the propagation of the best varieties, such as the Lemberger. The "Lemberger of Württemberg" was considered the preferred wine of the German Federal President Theodor Heuss and it is said that also the Prince Bismarck and Napoleon greatly appreciated this variety.
For years there has been a gradual but steady increase in the area under vines grown. The variety is classified as "Blauer Limberger". Lemberger and" Blaufränkisch "are synonymous for German wines produced with this grape.
In 2006, the Lemberger was cultivated on 1,650 hectares (1980/85, about 400 to 500 hectares). This variety is planted almost exclusively in Württemberg, where it has a thirteen percent share in the total number of vines. The Lemberger grape demands a warm climate and wind-protected places, as it leaves early and ripens late. The vine places great demands on the place and medium demands on the soil. It grows particularly well in fertile loess clay soils and its yield is medium. This speciality from Württemberg achieves very good top quality in places, and the wines are highly praised internationally.
The Lembergers come in several variants. On the one hand, light and fruity wines are produced; on the other hand, on the basis of late harvest qualities and selected grapes, red wines rich in extracts and tannins. Generally, these wines are of an intense dark red colour. In the nose they have an aroma reminiscent of blackberries, cherries, cherries, plums, gooseberries, thorny grapes, elderberries, bananas and cocoa, also with vegetable notes, such as green beans or green peppers. In terms of taste, the reds are presented, depending on the type of aging, with reminiscences of fruit or with a predominance of tannins, and generally with a long finish.
Occasionally, marked by ageing in barrels, the Lemberger also has Mediterranean charm and warmth. The Lemberger cava is considered a particular rarity.
The light and fruity Lembergers are ideally suited (like the proverbial "quarter liter" of Württemberg) to accompany snacks or a summer grill. The Lemberger with more accented tannins go well with game birds, hairy game of intense flavor, stews, lamb, hot roast beef and ripe alpine cheese.