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  1. Grapes: Riesling

Grown primarily in a few choice areas of the Rhine in Germany, the origins of the Riesling grape remain a point of conjecture among wine enthusiasts. One school of thought holds that the increase in the use of this grape was due to the monks at the Cistercian monastery at Eberbach. The legend goes that the monks determined that the red grapes currently cultivated on their lands could not compete with those grown in France. To that end, they ordered the vines removed and replaced with white grape varieties. The Riesling is often cited as the white grape chosen for the new plantings. There are documents tracing the origin of the Riesling and the use in wine to the 15th century. In the log maintained by Count Katzenelnbogen at Ruesselsheim, an entry for 13 March 1435 confirms the receipt of six vines of Riesling. Today, the grape is cultivated in a number of countries around the world. Along with Germany, the grapes are found in Canada, the USA, Australia, and Austria.

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