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Spätlese means literally ‘late gathering’, and denotes a category of German and Austrian white wine made from grapes that have been picked later than those for wine of ordinary kabinett quality, and so have achieved greater ripeness and strength (and in good years sweetness). No sort of selection process during the harvest is implied by the term, which is what marks out the next highest grade of wine, auslese, as superior.

The equivalent term for Alsace wines is vendange tardive.

Subjects: Cookery, Food, and Drink.

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