From Mario’s nose, nothing good can hide

Mario Schuermann in Frostline

Mario Scheuermann, he of the gifted nose and dogged determination, found his way to one of the great vineyards of South Africa, the Frostline Riesling, in the heart of the Great Karoo. He is pictured preparing his notebook, ready to taste a vertical lineup of South Africa’s rarest and most special dry white.

From the Rheingau and the Mosel, where exquisite Rieslings find their traditional ways into bottle just as a matter of course, Mario and his loyal and obedient wife Reka journeyed half way across the world to the rough bush country of the elevated plateau known as the Groot  Karoo, home to Dorper sheep and little isolated communities of people, where Germany means a shiny automobile with city plates streaking through town.

Reka had to drive, for Mario could not afford to arrive in a stressed condition. They knew that the Frostline Riesling Vineyard was at the end of a long dirt road, winding high into the southern-most snow country in Africa. But two hours after leaving the last group of buildings that constituted a town, Reka stopped the car on the edge of the earth road in the darkening twilight and asked Mario if they should turn back.   

"We are not in Germany now", he said. "Nor are we in Hungary. We are in Afrika. If we have to sleep here on the road with the African animals, because we tried and failed, will will have to. But for now, we carry on."

Just before dark, the Scheuermanns drove slowly into the driveway between rows of vines, past the baby ostriches and up to the home of Nelmarie and Guillaume, their hosts. The tasting was then scheduled for the early morning, when Mario would have properly rested.

The results of Mario’s careful evaluation are not available for publication here, as Mario has his own blog, the most popular in Germany.

You can find Mario’s views on many things, including Jack&Knox Frostline Riesling through or on Germany’s no 1 wine blog The direct access to the Frostline story is at

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