Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832) is considered the most important German poet and head of the literary era of German classical music. He was an all-rounder, because he was scientifically involved in botany, anatomy, zoology, mineralogy, meteorology, optics and color theory and, last but not least, he was also a wine expert. Goethe has put the following memorial to wine and women in short form: "A girl and a glass of wine will alleviate all need, and whoever does not kiss and who does not drink has long been dead!" Life played a big role.
His grandfather Friedrich Georg Göthe (1657-1730) owned the renowned inn "Zum Weidenhof" and built an extensive wine shop. His father Johann Caspar Goethe (1710-1782) let in the extensive wine cellar of the Goethe birth house in the "Großer Hirschgraben" Frankfurt am Main build, in which Goethe later kept his extensive collection and regularly added. According to tradition, it should also be thanks to the wine that it survived the difficult birth. When the child was born after three days of labor, it was without signs of life, discolored blue-black and threatened to suffocate. The baby was then bathed by the midwife in an arden (wooden trough) with warm wine, so that the heart was “pitted” (massaged) and ultimately saved her life.
In his father's house belonged wine and Wine enjoyment to everyday life. Goethe's father also had his own vineyards, which Goethe describes in "Poetry and Truth 1 / IV" as follows: "My father owned a vineyard in front of the Friedberger Tore, where asparagus rows were planted and maintained with great care between the rows of vines. Almost no day passed in the good season that my father did not go out, since we were usually allowed to accompany him and thus had pleasure and joy from the first products of spring to the last of autumn. “ You can enjoy this vineyard at today's Friedberger Landstrasse between Bethmannpark and Friedberger Platz. Goethe's maternal grandfather was Dr. Stadtschultheiß Johann Wolfgang Textor (1693-1771). He was head of the legal system in Frankfurt for life, as well as innkeeper and Wine merchant. Goethe's mother inherited from him a considerable number of wine barrels from the excellent vintages of 1706, 1719, 1726 and 1748. They were stored in the basement of the Goethehaus am Hirschgraben. When the mother moved to a new apartment on Roßmarkt in 1795 and sold the house to the wine merchant Blum for 22,000 guilders, Goethe received a share of 1,000 guilders from the proceeds from the wine, as well as a substantial collection of excellent ones Crescences.
Goethe had been drinking wine regularly since his youth, and that also explains that he tolerated a great deal and was hardly ever drunk (in a letter dated October 16, 1767 - at the age of 18 - he writes, “that he was drunk like a beast " ). However, he refused excessive drinking with (then usual) subsequent smashing of the glasses. The preferred wine was Franconian wine (Riesling) from his closer home Franconia whom he also tolerated best and enjoyed a bottle of lighter caliber at lunchtime. To its absolute Favorite wine counted a Würzburger stone, but also wines from the still famous Hochheim and Johannisberg Castle. For a 30-day spa stay in Karlovy Vary in 1820, he took a keg of Würzburg (volume of 80 bags) with him. According to invoices still received, he regularly obtained wine from all over Europe from a total of 40 wine dealers from the cities of Frankfurt, Worms, Erfurt and Reims. Among other things, the following are stated: Tokaji, Erlauer, Ofner (Hungary), Melniker (Czech Republic), Lacrima Christi (Italy), Malaga, Tinto de Rota (dessert wine from Spain), champagne, Graves, Alsatian, Languedoc, Burgundy (France) and Rustle (Austria). The friend of Friedrich von Schiller (1759-1805) ordered through him from the Erfurt dealer Ramann Wein and also got advice from Goethe or listened to his recommendations.
In a letter to the wine merchant Ramann dated May 2, 1816, he ordered "half a bucket of Würzburger and half a bucket of Alsatian, because filling up the missing gaps in my wine store is more necessary than ever this time " (one bucket at that time was around 60 liters ). The year 1811 with the famous that is often mentioned in literature 1811s was a particularly good one (not only in Germany) vintage. Goethe often raved about the "Eilfer", which he wrote to the famous winery Bassermann-Jordan ordered. A banquet in the house of the poet Clemens Brentano (1778-1842) is reported: "He could drink a lot of good Rhine wine, especially the 911" . Goethe preferred wine; beer he rarely drank because he couldn't stand it. His wife Christiane shared his passion for wine. In many of his letters and writings, the topics of wine, viticulture and wine enjoyment occur again and again. He was also very interested in the art of Winemaking and the Phenology of the vine and made many surviving drawings. Goethe was obviously inspired by the enjoyment of wine for his imperishable works. In this context he remarked: "Others sleep their intoxication, for me it is on paper!" And in a letter dated January 25th, 1781 he wrote: "Last night I drank a bottle of champagne and helped up the literature" .
In the Persian poet and Koran scholar Mohammed Schams ed-Din, vulgo Hafis (1324-1390), Goethe found a related twin soul across the centuries and cultures, who loved wine and women as much as he did and wrote many verses about it. By the way, his poems inspired him to write his most extensive collection of poems, “West-Eastern Divan”. Goethe criticized Islamic (as did Hafis) Alcohol ban and wrote in exuberant words about the Persian poet: “They called you holy Hafis, the mystical tongue, and they did not recognize the value of the word. You call them mystical because they think foolish things about you and give away their unfair wine in your name. But you are mystically pure because they do not understand you, who you are blessed without being pious! They don't want to allow you that. ”
There are many verses from Goethe and Quotes about wine and wine enjoyment. During a visit to Lake Zurich, he wrote in his travel diary on June 15, 1775: “Without wine, we can never be three hundred on earth. Without wine and without women, the devil bring our bodies ”. Another verse reads: "People learn to drink first, much later only to learn to eat, so they shouldn't forget to drink out of gratitude!" Goethe was also a connoisseur of wine, as told by a story at a dinner, to which the Grand Duke Carl August (1757-1828). A red wine was served and the guests were asked about the origin. Only Goethe gave the correct answer: "I don't know him, but I think it is a Jenenser (from Jena) who was in a Madeira barrel for a while" . He also believed in wine culture. Reluctantly to a guest who diluted his wine with water, he remarked: "Where did you learn this bad custom" .
Goethe drank up to one or two bottles (mostly light, low-alcohol) wine almost every day. At that time, this was considered normal consumption, because a contemporary of Goethe writes about this amount "that this is a modest portion for a strong, born and raised man in the land of wine" . It was only at a later age that Goethe restricted the enjoyment of wine in favor of Mineral water a. But on the day of his death on March 22, 1832, he is said to have asked for wine and water at nine in the morning and drank the glass with three sips. Goethe then died a little later at half past eleven. See also under literature and Drinking culture.