Muscat of Hamburg is a black grape from United Kingdom, also known as Black Muskat.
Muscat Hamburg is a grape that holds a low profile when it comes to flavours, and the wines tend to be light and rather neutral.
The grape is used both as a table grape and for wine production. Wines can be both dry and sweet. in Serbia the grape produces light, dry red wines with some Muscat aroma. When produced as a dessert wine it can create wines with flavours of roses, lychee, and melon.
A sweet Muscat of Hamburg wine will pair excellently with aromatic, spicy desserts, such as for example a Saffron Panna Cotta or a Mango and Saffron tart. The wine is best served at 10-12°C/50-54°F.
Where is it grown?
Muscat of Hamburg is reported to be grown in no less than ten countries. The statistics do not however tell to what extent this is for use as a table grape or for wine production.
The plantings have increased with fifteen percent between 2000 and 2010, and most of this has taken place in the area around Avignon in Rhône in France, with a focus on the Rasteau AOC.
- France 3.441 ha/8,503 ac, MPG rank 27, PTPA 0,4%
- Serbia 2.760 ha/6,820 ac, MPG rank 6, PTPA 4%
- Uruguay 1.500 ha/3,707 ac, MPG rank 2, PTPA 20%
There are reports of plantings also in Russia (180 ha/445 ac), USA (92 ha/227 ac), Italy (73 ha/181 ac), Germany (65 ha/161 ac), Croatia (14 ha/35 ac), Hungary (12 ha/30 ac), and Spain (2 ha/5 ac).
Muscat of Hamburg is a natural cross between Muscat of Alexandria and Schiava Grossa (a German variety, in spite of what appears to be an Italian name). It is thought to have been discovered – or possibly bred – in the mid nineteenth century in England.
In this comparatively short period of time, the variety has accumulated more than one-hundred synonyms. This is most likely a result of being part of the Muscat grape family, rather than for the wines it produces.