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Dunkelfelder grapes

by Dec 23, 20160 comments

Dunkelfelder is red wine grape variety that is dark skinned and produce amazing red wine.


The dark skin grapes produce deep, dark red hue which makes it an apt option to be used for several blends. Also, the dark skinned berries of Dunkelfelder are used to produce varietal wines.

This red wine grape is generally produced in Germany and other wines tend to be not so deep and intense in colour while, Dunkelfelder is very dark coloured grape.

Wine grape varieties

Hence, it is the first choice for blends in other German red wines. The varietal wine produced by the grape variety is also amazing.

The berries of this grape variety are quite small. They are typically dark skinned having dark, deep bluish red hue. The grapes are quite juicy and produce dark bluish red colour.

There are many synonyms of this red wine grape variety including Froelich V 4-4, Purpur, Farbtraube Froelich, etc.

History of Dunkelfelder

This red wine grape variety has its roots in Germany. The red wine grape variety is said to have arrived after crossing a teinturier, Farbertraube with Blauer Portugieser.

A German viticulturist namely Gustav Adolf Froelich (1847- 1912) carried out the crossing to produce this grape variety. This grape variety was initially named Froelich V 4-4.

It did not get a warm welcome and remained unnoticed for decades. A DNA profiling of the grapes was also carried out. However, the profiling showed a completely different result.

According to the DNA profiling, Dunkelfelder is a cross between Teinturier and Madeleine Angevine grape varieties.

In 1930s, the grape was worked upon at the Geisenheim grape breeding institute. After that Helmut Becker, an ampelographer named the grape Dunkelfelder.

It was later made available for general cultivation in the year 1980. The grape variety was named so because of its dark colour as Dunkel stands for dark. Also, the name signifies the unclear percentage of the grapes.


This red wine grape variety is produced in Germany. By 2006, the variety possessed about 920 acres (372 hectares) of plantings. The plantings are majorly found in Baden, Palantinate, Nahe, Rheinhessen and Ahr.

Planting and maintaining the vineyards of this red wine grape variety is not at all a cakewalk. The cultivation of this grape variety is very demanding; the results on the other hand are not regular.

The harvests are usually very irregular. The quantity of harvest is also very low. But, all these factors never superimpose the popularity and love for this red wine grape variety.

It is still one of the most amazing red wine grape varieties producing phenomenal red wine.

Characteristics of the Dunkelfelder wine

The characteristics of this red wine are quite rich. It is one of the most sought after red wines of all times. It is elegant, rich, velvety and amazing.

The wine produced by the Dunkelfelder grape variety is quite rich in colour as well as on the palate. The berries are dark skinned and hence, the wine produced by this grape variety is also dark in colour.

The deep and dark red hue looks quite pleasing to the eyes.  The dark and velvety red colour is quite overwhelming. Also, the taste of this wine is phenomenal.

The varietal wines produced by Dunkelfelder have high amount of acidity as well as good body. The flavours of the wine are quite neutral. The wine tastes like a powerful fruity blend of cherries, blackberries and caramel.

Food Pairings with Dunkelfelder

Dunkelfelder has varied characteristics. This single wine flaunts different character which makes it a perfect fit with a variety of food items.

It is a rich wine and hence, it is apt to serve with rich food. The best food to serve with this amazing red wine is barbequed dishes.

The rich, smoky flavours of the barbecued dishes enhance the flavour of the wine and please the taste buds to the core.

Also, this red wine can be paired with several cheeses. The taste of the wine is quite appealing when taken with certain kinds of cheeses.

The best way to derive the maximum amount of pleasure from this enthralling red wine is to serve this red wine chilled with cheese. Chilled wine along with delicious cheese soothes the palate and gives amazing taste.

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Michael Bredahl

Michael Bredahl

Wine Writer

Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂

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