Dresden Wine Scene
Augustus II is credited to be the king behind the discovery of the secret of manufacturing porcelain in Europe. In 1701 he imprisoned the alchemist Johann Friedrich Böttger and tried to force him to reveal the secret of manufacturing gold. Of course making gold out of nothing was a sort of mission impossible, but Böttger saved his own life by unlocking the secret of porcelain production, a recipe until then only known by a handful of Chinese artisans. The manufacture of fine porcelain continues today at the Meissen porcelain factory.
Dresden is not the first destination that comes to mind when thinking of wine tourism. However, Saxony (Sachsen) has a long history in terms of wine production and it is a region that will reserve many surprises for the adventurous wine-lovers.
For an extensive overview of Sachsen wine region and a list of wineries to visit, please read this piece by Nancy Parode @IntoWine.
Dresden is reachable by plane from the major European airports. Vineyards are along the terraces of Elbe river and not far from the city. Dresden itself it's a splendid city deserving a few days visit.
Surprise, surprise, Dresden has also the best wine bar in the whole Germany: WeinKulturBar, that I was unable to visit because it has a 1-year waiting list (yes! you have read right! fully booked for the 2016!). You can find a comprehensive review of this lovely bistro on Christian Schiller Wine Blog.
Some local friends suggested me to pay a visit to WeinZentrale, a recently opened wine bar not too far from the city centre. And so I did. A relaxing environment, a delicious selection of tapas featuring local delicatessen and an excellent (and very well priced) wine list make this place a must-visit destination for any wine-lover wandering around Dresden. The owner, sommelier Jens Pietzonka, is extremely knowledgeable and down-to-earth. On the shelves you will find the best of local Rieslings (of course!), Muskats and even a Sachsen Nebbiolo, a great variety of German wines, an important selection of Italian producers, some of the best South African ones and several other international bottles, all carefully and distinctively selected.
Not only is WeinZentrale offering wine, but also gives you the opportunity to attend various cultural events such as the Reading Nights during which different Dresden authors (read Francis Mohr or the pop writer Mike Altmann) will visit the wine bar .
WEINZENTRALE is on Hoyerswerdaer Straße 26, 01099 Dresden, weinzentrale.com
Enjoy Dresden and the Sachsen wine region!