Germany’s Non-Beery Football World Cup Drink

If you think that wine needs to be celebrated, that it needs to be sniffed, swirled, swooshed,  and commented on every time…. Stop reading right now! This post is not for you.

If, however, you think wine can be a just-for-fun drink, thirst-quenching and stimulating, uncomplicated and easy-going, just like beer, keep reading.

Weinschorle – your perfect summer sprizz (picture credit @DWI Deutsches Weininstitut)

Because this is my favorite WorldCup drink in Germany: Schorle [‘shor-la’]! Aka Grschpritzter. Aka Sprizz. In some wine regions of Germany this is THE summer drink. Take Pfalz or Rheinhessen… no Weinfest without Schorle! Schorle is the local’s energy drink: half wine, half sparkling water served in the Schoppen [1][‘shop-pun’] glass, which holds 0.4 or 0.5 liter, depending on the region.

Schorle is great because it is refreshing, low in alcohol and calories, and keeps you well hydrated, too. And – oh ja! – the tradition of drinking Schorle can be traced back to the Romans. Almost all OldWorld wine history is rooted somehow in Roman times. Wine went wherever the Roman Empire went. Wine was a daily staple. It was not only essential for keeping up the troops’ morale while they “domesticized” barbaric Europe, but it was also considered a safe drink in times where clean water was not always available. (Wine was also considered a medicine: it was good for treating tapeworm, flatulence, depression, and more.) But the Romans would always blend their wines with water and spices. Drinking pure wine was considered barbaric. Had the Romans known the pleasures of adding soda water, the Empire might still be standing….

Anyway, in that tradition, we love to add water to wine – at least for casual drinkinglike at summer parties, wine fests, and sports events.

How do you make Schorle? Take a good-quality, well-chilled white or rosé.. Fill a glass halfway. Fill it the rest of the way with cold sparkling water. Take a long first sip. Then top it up again with wine. There you go. The perfect mix!

Too basic and not show-offish enough? Here’s something more sophisticated: 1/3 rosé, 1/3 tonic, 1/3 sparkling water, and a good dash of gin. Add mint, ice cubes and lemon zest. Done!

Whichever you choose, you are now ready to watch the World Cup Rheinhessen/Pfalz-style!