Silvaner comes from a natural cross between Traminer and Österreichisch Weiss (literally Austrian white) and is one of the oldest grape varieties. In 1659, the cultivation of Silvaner was first documented in Germany, namely in Castell (Franken). It was once the most important grape in Germany. In 1970, 23% of German vineyards were planted with the Silvaner grape, however more recently (2018), it made up only 4.6% of the country's plantings.
Franken today has the highest percentage of Silvaner (24.5%), but the biggest growing area of Silvaner in the world is located in Rheinhessen with 2,162 ha.
Silvaner ripens about two weeks earlier than Riesling, likes average exposure to sunshine and needs moist soil. It yields a rather full-bodied, neutral wine with a mild acidity, and is generally best enjoyed while it is young. This variety can express its terroir almost as well as Riesling. The aromas often resemble flowers and plants, or melons, yellow plums and apples. With its delicate, earthy and fruity tones and easily digestible acid, Silvaner makes an excellent food match, classically with asparagus, but also excellent with fish.