Definition - What does Trocken mean?
Trocken is a German wine term that means "dry." In order for a wine to be labelled as Trocken, it must meet specific criteria for residual sugar and acidity. The term was developed as a wine rating to distinguish different types and styles of wine produced from fully ripe wine grapes.
WineFrog explains Trocken
In 2009, the traditional wine rating system of Germany was re-organized by the EU wine market, due to changes in climate and winemaking techniques.
Traditionally, wines in Germany were notorious for not being fully ripe at harvest. To level the sugar content, vintners would add sugar to the wine during the winemaking process (a process known as chaptalization). Over time, this practice of sugaring was regulated, and rating systems like Troken were developed to distinguish quality wines.
While the term Trocken means dry, it is not a subjective rating; in order for wine to be labelled Trocken, residual sugar cannot be greater than 4 grams per liter or 0.4%, unless the total acidity is within 2 grams per liter of the residual sugar, in which case, the residual sugar can go up to 9 grams per liter or 0.9%.