(5% of total cultivation area)
Today, this variety is mainly cultivated in Austria originating in the Alsace and having been introduced to Germany by the former agricultural honorary, Mr. Bronner from Wiesloch.
We introduced St. Laurent to our estate in 1989 and has since found many fans. Quality wise it lies somewhere between a Pinot Noir (Spätburgunder ) and a Portugieser.
Almost half of the 600 to 700 hectares of St. Laurent planted in Germany can be found in the Pfalz.
Characteristics and requirements:
Ripening time is at it` s peak somewhere between the Portugieser and the Pinot Noir (Spätburgunder).
St. Laurent has compact, oval shaped, thick skinned berries, saturated with dark pigments. The berry density combined with high humidity causes danger of rot setting in, particularly if the skins are damaged or burst. Good canopy management is vital here, in particular the reduction of leaf growth, in order to keep fungal infection to a minimum. However, warm sheltered sites are important. On the one hand to promote acidity reduction during ripening, on the other to reduce the dangers of late frosts. Varying temperatures threaten not just growth but also have an effect on clusters which in turn, influence later yields on a negative scale.
The wine itself:
St. Laurent is one of the most precious of red wine varieties.
Given optimal ripeness and maturity, this variety will produce a complex, deep and full bodied red wine with an aromatic fruity finesse of blackberries, cherries and plums. The longer the fermentation on the skins (maceration), combined with oak cask maturity, the stronger it`s structure will prove.