Apfelwein (German, "apple wine") is the German form of cider, produced from apples. It is also regionally known as Ebbelwoi, Äppler, Stöffche, Apfelmost (apple must), Viez (from Latin "vice", the second or substitute wine), and Saurer Most (sour must). It has an alcohol content of 5.5%–7% and a tart, sour taste. The name Äppler, mainly propagated by large producers, is generally not used in restaurants or by smaller manufacturers, who instead call the beverage Schoppen or Schoppe, which is referring to the measure of the glass.


Apfelwein, since it is usually (a bit) cloudy, is often served in the "Geripptes" (a glass with a lozenge cut that refracts the light).

At any rate, the size of the Geripptes glass is usually 0.25 litre , although there is a larger variant that holds 0.3 litre, as well as a glass that holds the doubled amount of 0.5 litres. Delivered by major pressing-houses in 1-litre bottles, it is considered rude and unrefined to drink Apfelwein directly from the serving vessel, whether it be a bottle or a pitcher (Bembel).

Traditional Apfelwein restaurants and their habitual guests generally hold to the 0.3-litre standard. Therefore a 0.25l glass is often named a "Beschisserglas" (rip-off glass) as it contains less Apfelwein for the same price. The serving of Apfelwein in other types of glasses (for example, Longdrink glasses) is rare. A "Geripptes" filled with Apfelwein is also called a "Schoppen". The serration of the Apfelwein glasses is common not only for the pleasing refraction of incident light, but also because in former times one often ate without cutlery—and smooth glasses slide from greasy hands rather more easily than do serrated ones.

Apfelwein is also available in the Bembel (a jug) and is ordered in this form when one is significantly thirsty or with company. The paunchy jar (made from salt-glazed stoneware) usually has a basic grey colour with blue detailing. The different sizes are usually designated after their contents in glasses (for example 4er ("vierer") or 8er ("achter") Bembel, the small 0.25 litres or the 0.3 litres of glasses are taken as a basis depending upon place of use. Accordingly a 4er Bembel can contain 1 litre, or 1.2 litres of Apfelwein). In the Eifel region, near Hunsrück, around Moseltal, along the lower Saar, and in Trier, the drinking container is called "Viezporz", which consists of white porcelain or stoneware.

Hot Apfelwein is commonly taken as an old household remedy against colds, or as a warming beverage in the cold season. The Apfelwein is heated (not cooked!) and served with a cinnamon stick, possibly with cloves, and/or a slice of lemon.

Apfelwein as a Cocktail

Sharp tongues from foreign regions claim that Apfelwein is a beverage that only starts to taste of anything after the seventh glass. This is possibly the reason for the more or less common cocktails with Apfelwein:

* The most common is the "Sauergespritzer", which is Apfelwein blended with 30% mineral water. The Tiefgespritzter or Batschnasser are varieties which use more mineral water.
*Also common is the "Süssgespritzer", which is Apfelwein blended with lemonade, orange-lemonade or fresh-pressed apple juice (lemonade being the most common).
* Less commonly the Apfelwein is blended with cola. This concoction is referred to as a KE (for Kola-Eppler); in Frankfurt am Main it is known as a Korea, while east of Frankfurt the names "Panzer" ("tank") or "Panzersprit" ("tank fuel") are used.
* Rarer still, the Apfelwein can be mixed with beer. This combination is named "Bembelschlabber".

Mixing (in particular with cola) is considered a faux pas by most Apfelwein connesseurs, though this is nevertheless quite common outside of Frankfurt am Main (usually mixed 80:20 with cola).

Some innkeepers and locales refuse to serve "Süssgespritzter". If a Süssgespritzter is ordered at one of these locales, the customer will be given the Apfelwein and lemonade separately (for a similar phenomenon, see ketchup on hotdogs), which allows the customer to mix the two without forcing this distasteful task upon the staff of the establishment.

Apfelwein is often made with the addition of the unprocessed juice from the fruit of a small, indigenous apple tree known as Speierling ("Sorbus domestica") or Speyerling, an endangered species that is easily confused with the wild apple. Although it is difficult for the non-initiate to detect any difference in the end product, for many Hessians this rare supplement contributes much to the lore and mystique of the beverage.

Regional provenance

Apfelwein is mainly produced and consumed in Hesse (where it is the state beverage), particularly in the Frankfurt, Wetterau and Odenwald areas. It is also found in "Moselfranken", Merzig (Saarland) and the Trier area; as well as the lower Saar area and the region bordering on Luxembourg. In these regions there are several large producers as well as numerous small, private producers who use traditional recipes. Some of the most famous restaurants where Apfelwein is served are in Sachsenhausen (Frankfurt am Main). In some of these regions there are regular cider competitions and fairs, in which the small, private producers participate. Cider songs are composed and sung at these events. The Merzig region crowns a Viez Queen, and the lower Saar area a Viez King.

An official "Viez route", ("Rue de Cidre") connects Saarburg with the border to Luxembourg. Also an annual Viez Fest is celebrated in Merzig. The date is usually the second Saturday in October.

Apfelwein has become popular in the homebrewing community recently because of its relative ease of production and pleasant taste. The recipe typically involves 5 gallons of apple juice with dextrose added to increase alcohol content, then fermented for one month using wine yeast such as montrachet.

ee also

* Country wine

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Apfelwein — Apfelwein …   Deutsch Wörterbuch

  • Apfelwein — Apfelwein, so v.w. Cider …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Apfelwein — Apfelwein, s. Obstwein …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Apfelwein — Apfelwein, s.v.w. Zider …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Apfelwein — Traditionelles „Geripptes“ Glas mit Apfelwein Apfelwein, auch Apfelmost, Saurer Most oder Viez, ist ein Fruchtwein, der meist aus einer Mischung verschiedener, möglichst säurehaltiger Äpfel gekeltert und vergoren wird. Auch Holzäpfel werden… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Apfelwein — Jarra con un Schoppen (vaso) de Apfelwein y una jarra. El Apfelwein (del alemán: vino de manzana) es una bebida alcohólica extraída por la fermentación etílica del zumo de las manzanas muy típica de algunas zonas de Alemania (en concreto en el… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Apfelwein — der Apfelwein, e (Aufbaustufe) Fruchtwein, der meist aus einer Mischung verschiedener, möglichst säurehaltiger alter Apfelsorten gekeltert und vergoren wird Synonyme: Cidere, Zider Beispiel: Apfelwein ist eine hessische Spezialität und wird dort… …   Extremes Deutsch

  • Apfelwein — Ạp|fel|wein, der: durch alkoholische Gärung aus dem Saft von Äpfeln erzeugtes, weinähnliches Getränk. * * * Apfelwein,   aus vergorenem Saft frischer Äpfel (mit hohem Säuregehalt) hergestellter Obstwein, heute v. a. im südwestdeutschen Raum… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Apfelwein — Ạp|fel|wein …   Die deutsche Rechtschreibung

  • Apfelwein, der — Der Apfelwein, des es, plur. inusit. S. Apfelmost …   Grammatisch-kritisches Wörterbuch der Hochdeutschen Mundart

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