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Douglas Montoya, SommelierThe Sommelier's Column is presented by sommelier Douglas Montoya of the Spanish Sommelier School in Guatemala.

the sommeliers columnPresented by sommelier Douglas Montoya of the Spanish Sommelier School in Guatemala.

Germany and its Spectacular White Wines

Germany is one of the northernmost wine-producing countries of the world. The climate and weather pose challenges to viticulture. Moderately warm summers, favorable amounts of rainfall and long maturation periods allow the grapes to develop and preserve their fruity acidity - the hallmark of German wines, particularly whites.

Find out more about the white wines of Germany and how to pair them >>

The most common names that can be found on the labels, relating to the classification of the wines are: Tafelwein (table wine) and Qualitätswein (quality wine).

Because of its climatic conditions, Germany is known as a country of white wines. Red varieties need a lot of sun, which is uncommon in these latitudes. Despite this, you can find nice red wines made from varieties such as Dornfelder and Pinot Noir.

Undoubtedly, varieties of white grapes are the most attractive and produce the most pleasing wines to the consumer who ventures into the wine world.

The following are the three most popular varieties.


Riesling WinesThe Riesling grape is the most important in Germany. It is very aromatic and has a high acidity level that makes for excellent dry wines, semi-sweet, sweet and sparkling. Its great weakness is that it takes about 130 days to mature. It's one of the most aromatic grape varieties in the world. The primary fruit aromas in Riesling are apricot, honey-crisp apple and pear. You'll often smell things like honeycomb or even to a chemical aroma similar to petrol/gas.

With dry Riesling we recommend seafood or pasta with cream. A subtler recommendation may be a pairing with beef and pork. Sweeter Riesling combines well with fish or chicken.


 Müller-Thurgau WinesMüller-Thurgau is a variety that unlike the long ripening Riesling, requires only 100 days to mature. It can grow on more soils, and is of higher performance. This grape has a more neutral taste than the Riesling.

Müller-Thurgau grapes produce very pleasant and slightly acidic wines. They show hints of nutmeg, apple, currant and apricot aromas. Müller-Thurgau wines pair well with light vegetable dishes (especially asparagus) and salads.


Silvaner winesSilvaner is another fairly neutral variety. It was the most common grape in Germany until the 1960s but lately it has lost ground. Today, it is still popular in the regions of Franconia and Rheinhessen, where it is grown in calcareous soils to produce powerful dry wines.

Sylvaner has a light, neutral floral note. Its acidity is very acute and sometimes shows a remarkable minerality. Silvaner wines goe well with tarte flambée, or simple chicken or fish dishes.

We invite you to try the wines of Germany. You will get to enjoy very pleasant and and easy to understand wines.


Douglas Montoya - Escuela Española de Sommeliers GuatemalaDouglas Montoya from the Spanish Sommelier School in Guatemala.


Wines from Somontano, SpainAugust 8, 2016

The Somontano, a wine region located at the foot of the Pyrenees.

The name Somontano means "Under the Mountain". The climate in this part of Spain is continental with snowy winters and hot summer months. Temperature changes are very abrupt when the seasons change. There are approximately 2,700 hours of direct sunlight per year, optimal growing conditions. There are about 3,000 hectares of vineyards registered by the local governing board. The native grapes make for very rustic wines.

wine pairing with fishJune 13, 2016

The Delicate Pairing of Wine and Fish

In our last article we discussed on the "Vihno verde", a very refreshing and pleasant wine when temperatures rise. Despite the arrival of the rainy season, we keep going through a rather hot period. Therefore, today we will talk about the pairing of white wines, in particular with fish. In fact, it is not uncommon to take the excellence out of a dish by choosing the wrong wine.

Wine and ChocolateMay 17, 2016

The Sensual Combination of Wine and chocolate

Wine and chocolate are two very important components in today's culinary world. A good meal accompanied by a good wine is simply elegant, while a dessert with chocolate will always be the delight of a good table.
Pairing wine with chocolate is very interesting although it may seem impossible to some. Chocolate has a complexity of flavors, just like wine, and a combination of both can provide memorable sensations.

Vinho VerdeApril 8, 2016

The perfect wine for hot weather

These last days have been exceptionally hot. High temperatures motivate us to try refreshing beverages and when it comes to wines, white, rosé and sparkling ones should be your choice.

In this context, today we are going to look at a wine with some very particular characteristics: The "Vinho verde" or green wine.

Rosé wine

February 3, 2016

The wine that should be present on a romantic table.

As we are in the month of affection and friendship and I have a preference for rosé for this occasion, I am going to answer a few questions about these interesting wines.

The column of sommelier Douglas MontoyaJanuary 5, 2016

Today we're going to talk about the "queen of the red grape varieties." We are referring to the Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cabernet Sauvignon is actually a natural crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc that occurred around 1600. It's a variety that has adapted to a wide range of terroirs all over the world and that can display a wide aromatic variety.

The column of sommelier Douglas MontoyaDecember 15, 2015

As we're approaching the holiday season, today we are going to take a look at sparkling wines. Sometimes they're also called "Champagne", but that's not correct at all. By regulation, the only wine that can be called Champagne, is the one that's produced in the Champagne region in Northern France.

Sparkling wine is a carbonated wine, a wine that has bubbles. It usually takes on the name of the region or country where originates. The carbonation in sparkling wine can be achieved using one of two methods: Méthode Champenoise (Champagne method) or method Charmat-Martinotti.

The column of sommelier Douglas MontoyaDecember 5, 2015

In his third article, Douglas explains Tuscany and its wines that range from rather simple to extremely interesting.

First we must understand that the wine of Tuscany is the Italian wine produced in Tuscany, a region in central Italy and one of the worlds most notable producers of wine. Names such as Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano are mainly made with Sangiovese grapes. In contrast, Vernaccia is the basis of white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano. Another well-known wine is the "Vin Santo" produced with different grapes of the region.

The column of sommelier Douglas MontoyaOctober 1st 2015

This month, wine expert Douglas Montoya tells us some interesting facts about the wine production in France.

France is recognized throughout the world for the diversity of its wines. It ranks among the first countries in terms of production and quality of this product. Composed of 17 wine regions, the multitude of terroirs with many different grape varieties offers a wide range of wines for every taste.

rioja corks In this first edition, Douglas shares some interesting details about Rioja wines with us.

This Tempranillo grape is produced mainly in the regions of La Rioja and the Basque Country, and to a lesser extent in Navarra, Castilla and Leon. The cultivation of the vine dates back to the time of the Phoenicians and the primitive Celts almost 3000 years ago.

In the three subareas of production, Rioja Alta, Rioja Baja and Rioja Alavesa, wineries produce red, white and rosé wines with different characteristics, traditionally by blending different grape varieties.

When it comes to pairing, young Rioja wines can make a good match with simple dishes, while Reserva and Grand Reserva can be perfectly paired with more complex flavors such as lamb, wild boar and game. Riojas are for everyone, from people who enjoy a glass every now and then to the most demanding connoisseurs.