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A Tale of Two Gs: Comparative Tasting of German and Georgian Varietals in the Finger Lakes – April 2nd, 2022

April 2, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Gs: Comparative Tasting of German and Georgian Varietals in the Finger Lakes – April 2nd, 2022

April 2 @ 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

German Wine Society Members and Friends,

We would like to remind you of our upcoming New York winery tasting, which features a virtual presentation and wines to be shipped to us directly from the winery, including some grapes that we have never tried in our Society’s events before. This is an event not to be missed! Please register with the Capital Chapter of the German Wine Society and purchase your wine packs from the winery as explained in this notice, as soon as possible. There is still time to get your wines before the tasting, but the deadline is getting close.

This event reminder also provides notice of a wine substitution. Our host for this event, the Dr. Konstantin Frank winery, informs us that the Pinot Noir described in our prior communication has unexpectedly sold out, apparently because of a recent very successful benefit the winery conducted for Ukraine. We have agreed it will be replaced by the winery with their Blaufränkisch for all sales going forward, though a few participants who ordered early are still receiving the Pinot Noir. Both will be discussed during the event.

We will now have a tasting of a Riesling and a Blaufränkisch – the former being the most widely planted white grape in Germany, while the latter is a red grape also known as Lemberger in Germany and primarily planted there in the Württemberg wine region around the town of Stuttgart. Blaufränkisch is also planted in several other countries in Central Europe, including Austria, Slovenia (its German name came from being imported to Germany from Lemberg in the region of Lower Styria, then in the Austro-Hungarian Empire and now in Slovenia) and Hungary. These will be tasted side by side with the two ancient varietals Rkatsiteli (white) and Saperavi (red) originating in the country of Georgia, considered to be the oldest wine producing nation in the world. We will compare these Old World varieties planted in the New World.

We will be visiting again with Meaghan Frank of the Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery in the Finger Lakes. A number of wineries and winemakers in the Finger Lakes produce a wide range of high-quality wines. The Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery is among the most prominent of these, and was a pioneer in establishing and developing the region.

Before the GWS held our first virtual event with the Dr. Konstantin Frank winery in 2021, our Vice President Christian Schiller had written about the winery and its wines in his wine blog, and we had enjoyed some of their wines at our events. Our virtual event last year with Meaghan Frank focused on Rieslings, and we tasted wines from sparkling through late-harvest. Those who had the chance to attend that event will recall that Meaghan was a most gracious and knowledgeable guide to her family’s vineyard and its varied wines.

This time we will meet via Zoom on Saturday, April 2, 2022, from 4 pm – 6 pm EST. This event requires both registration with the GWS to attend the event, and a purchase of one of the packages of wines offered from the vineyard to participate (the GWS does not sell the wines). Above all, please plan ahead with sufficient time to purchase and receive your wines directly from the winery. You may choose one of three packages, as detailed below. These wines are offered at all-in prices with a generous discount and shipping costs are included (applicable taxes vary by state and will be added). The deadline to register for this event is on Friday, March 18, 2022.

Our presenter, Meaghan Frank, is the fourth generation to run the winery. She is the great granddaughter of the founder, Dr. Konstantin Frank. Meaghan earned an MBA in wine business from the University of Adelaide, Australia, a Masters in enology from Cornell University, New York, and the WSET Diploma from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust.

Frederick Frank, President of the winery, remains involved, and took over from his father, Willy Frank. Fred is a graduate of Cornell University and attended the Geisenheim Research Institute for Viticulture and Enology in Germany.

Founder Dr. Konstantin Frank, of German ancestry, was born in Odessa in 1899, then part of the Tsarist Russian Empire. He earned his Ph.D. in Viticulture in the Ukraine. Surviving the Russian Revolution and two World Wars, Dr. Frank arrived in New York with his family in 1951. He purchased land in the Finger Lakes, and, as told by the winery, “With decades of knowledge and experience, Dr. Frank successfully planted the first European grape varieties in the Eastern United States in 1958.” Others thought the region was too cold for European vitis vinifera varietals, but he proved otherwise. When the first vintage was released in 1962, Dr. Frank was 63 years old. Also, he founded the American Wine Society.

In the book, “Finger Lakes Wine and the Legacy of Dr. Konstantin Frank,” published in 2015, author Tom Russ refers to Dr. Frank as the “Father of Vinifera in the East” and writes that he “is remembered throughout the United States as a pioneer and advocate for vinifera grapes and quality wine.” The book, which is optional, is available at www.Amazon.com.

For more information, you may also wish to visit the website at www.drfrankwines.com.

Because we are continuing to operate in a virtual environment for this event, we have a different type of process to sign up for and participate in this tasting than for our in-person events. The first step, as usual, is to register for the event, either using PayPal for payment

Register for this Event click here


or by completing and submitting the attached registration form and including a check made out to the German Wine Society. The price to participate in this event is modest, just $10 per membership account (individual or couple) for members, or $20 for non-members, to contribute to our D.C. chapter expenses. You will need to have internet access to Zoom to participate in our tasting, either downloaded on your computer or otherwise available through your browser. Everyone who registers by the deadline will receive a Zoom link on the day of the event from board member Karen Stokes.

he next step is to choose and order your wines for the tasting from the vineyard. Meaghan Frank will present the two white wines in one round followed by the two red wines. You do not have to order all of the wines. You may order the two white wines or the two red wines or all four wines:

Package #1 (2 Bottle Pack – White Wine): Package Price $50.00

Rkatsiteli, 2021 – Elegant, aromatic and tropical, Rkatsiteli originates in the country of Georgia. It is one of the oldest grape varieties in the world dating back to 3000 B.C. The grape has a strong resistance to cold winters and retains crisp acidity.

Margrit Dry Riesling, 2019 – A special single-vineyard Riesling from a warmer site that produces riper grapes, this wine is dry but does contains residual sugar at 5.9 g/L. The Magrit Riesling has an impressive rating of 92 points from the Wine Advocate.

Package #2 (2 Bottle Pack – Red Wine): Package Price $55.00

Saperavi, 2019 – This ancient variety native to Georgia was first brought to the Finger Lakes by the founder in the early 1960s. Fermented in stainless steel, the wine is aged 16 months in new and old French Oak. The winery describes it as violet in color and full bodied with polished tannins and notes of plum, black cherry, earth, cedar and smoke.

Blaufränkisch, 2019 – This wine is aged 18 months, 20% in new, and 80% in 2-4 year old, French oak. The dark-skinned grape also known as Lemberger is a late-ripening variety, growing well in certain cooler-weather regions such as the Finger Lakes, and producing red wines which are typically rich in tannin. Flavors are described as those of plums and blueberries with a characteristic spicy richness.

Old Vines Pinot Noir, 2019 (for those who received this wine instead by an early order) – The Pinot Noir includes grapes from vines planted by the founder in 1958, some of the oldest Pinot Noir vines in the United States. Fermented in stainless steel, the wine is aged 18 months in 2-4 year old French Oak. Descriptors from the winery include cranberry and red cherry flavors with subtle oak and a long finish.

Package #3 (4 Bottle Pack): Package Price $100

All of the above wines in both packages, including one bottle each of the 2019 Margrit Dry Riesling, the 2021 Rkatsiteli, the 2019 Blaufränkisch and the 2019 Saperavi, for $5.00 less than buying the two packages separately. An excellent deal, especially with flat-rate shipping included in the total price! Experience every wine in the tasting from the comfort of home.

Link to order packages (copy into your browser rather than just clicking):

German Wine Society DC

Should you have any questions about purchases or shipping, please contact the winery directly. We have included the above link for ordering the wine packages for you to plan ahead to order and have these wines in time for the tasting and for your inventory. The winery will ship to California, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C., plus other continental States at their discretion and subject to State regulations. We will be letting other GWS chapters know of the opportunity to participate in this tasting – one of the advantages of a virtual event!

Arrange your favorite appetizers and other dishes to accompany your wines, and be ready to enjoy the tasting.

All correspondence in response to this email should be directed to our President and acting Secretary, Carl Willner, by email to carl.willner1@verizon.net, or by mail at:Carl Willner

1014 Reserve Champion Drive Rockville, MD 20850

If you will be making a payment online to register for the event, or to pay membership dues ($35 per person or couple, annually), please be sure to use PayPal; we cannot accept payment by other forms of credit. If you decide to register by mail, please mail your registration to the Chapter Secretary at the above address, with your check made out to the German Wine Society.

All GWS members are reminded that alcohol consumption can lead to intoxication. Therefore, Society members and their guests are expected to drink in moderation at Society events. Fortunately, one of the benefits of holding an online event is that most of you will be safely at home and not driving to the event, but should you decide to visit a friend to participate from there, please bear in mind the usual precautions about having a designated driver where available, or mostly tasting rather than consuming alcohol when such drivers are not available. All participants must be of legal age (21 years of age or older) to join the event and consume alcoholic beverages.

Carl Willner President and Secretary, German Wine Society Capital Chapter

Please clip and return this registration form if registering by mail, to the Secretary at the address listed above. Do not return the entire event notice.


Name (s) ____________________________________________________________________________ Member or non-Member ________________________________________________________________ Payment submitted ____________________________________________________________________ E-mail contact ________________________________________________________________________ Telephone contact _____________________________________________________________________ 


April 2, 2022
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm