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Best Austrian Red

Blaufraenkisch
8
50%
Zweigelt
4
25%
Sankt Laurent
2
13%
Spaetburgunder
0
No votes
Blauer Wildbacher
0
No votes
Other
2
13%
 
Total votes : 16
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Bill Hooper

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Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bill Hooper » Fri Oct 27, 2006 11:22 pm

Aside from the more international grapes (but including Spaetburgunder) what makes for Austrias greatest reds?






Prost!
Bill

P.S.
Many of the best red wines I've had have been Cuvees, but for polls sake let's use single varieties please.
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Bob Ross

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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bob Ross » Sat Oct 28, 2006 12:14 am

I voted for "Other" because Janet and loved a red wine in a little restaurant in Vienna, but darned if I know what it was.

Are there any great Austrian red wines?
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Eric Ifune » Sat Oct 28, 2006 1:37 pm

Are there any great Austrian red wines?

As good as anywhere in the world.
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Clint Hall

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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Clint Hall » Sat Oct 28, 2006 2:37 pm

Eric Ifune wrote:
Are there any great Austrian red wines?

As good as anywhere in the world.


Eric, please name a few great Austrian red wines. Do they age well? Do they match well with food? Why don't most American wine shops stock them? Where does one buy them, short of hopping on a plane for Vienna?
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bob Ross » Sat Oct 28, 2006 2:59 pm

I had a cute red made from 100% Zweigelt called Color Me Red. The website is fun to read but I'm not sure how "important" the wine itself is. http://www.turnmeredwine.com/

Chambers Street has many Austrian wines, all white. Wine Searchers Pro picks up only six different Austrian reds in the US, but of course it isn't really designed for searching by color and country.

Höpler Zweigelt Qualitätswein Burgenland is fairly widely distributed here, but again, not an "important" wine.

Lots of high quality whites, but high quality reds seem few and far between.

Is there an online shop specializing in top flight reds from Austria? I'd like to explore the area.

Regards, Bob
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Bill Hooper

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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bill Hooper » Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:53 pm

Clint,

Although not 'common' in the US, we have a pretty good selection available to us. There are easily dozens of Importers of Austrian wines with Vin Divino and TT leading the way. Some of my favorites are (with cuvees in quotes):

Poeckl -Neusiedlersee "Admiral", Pinot Noir, Zweigelt, Sankt Laurent

Heinrich -Neusiedlersee "Gabarinza", Zweigelt

Umathum -Neusiedlersee Pinot Noir, Sankt Laurent, Zweigelt, "Hallebuehl" and Haideboden (Cab Sauv/Merlot/Zweigelt/Blaufraenkisch)

Markowitsch -Carnuntum "Cuvee Rosenberg(Usually Cab/Zweigelt/Blaufraenkisch)"

Fischer -Thermenregion Pinot Noir, Cabernet/merlot, "Gradenthal Zweigelt/Cab/Merlot Blend"

Paul Achs -Neusiedlersee Blaufraenkisch, Pinot Noir, "Pannobile" and "Ungerberg"

Not to mention all of the great stuff coming out of Burgenland. I haven't had much experience with long-term cellaring, but I've had some great 5-6 year old Zweigelt and Blaufraenkisch, and most of the above mentioned producers make well-structured wines that should certainly have years of staying power.
I also think that most importers are weary of bringing in large amounts (not like any of these are BIG PRODUCTION wineries) and probably don't import every wine in every vintage.
I don't know of any "specialty shop" for Austrian wines, but if you find one, let me know!

Prost!
Bill

P.S. Tasting notes to follow. How 'bout an open mike, or better yet, a grape focus? :D
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bob Ross » Sat Oct 28, 2006 11:26 pm

I sent a note to the Austrian Wine Marketing Board asking for retail shops that have a good selection of Austrian wines, especially reds, in the US.

If they respond, I'll revert.

Regards, Bob

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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Mark Lipton » Sun Oct 29, 2006 12:21 am

Bob Ross wrote:I sent a note to the Austrian Wine Marketing Board asking for retail shops that have a good selection of Austrian wines, especially reds, in the US.


Bob,
You could also try a Winemonger, a specialty importer of Austrian wines in LA run by an Internet acquaintance of mine, Emily Weissman. They have about 20 different Austrian reds from some of the best producers in the country currently and have very reasonable shipping IIRC.

http://www.winemonger.com

Mark Lipton
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Michael Pronay » Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:32 am

These were the top red wines from our annual tasting for the wine part of the restaurant guide "Österreich A la Carte 2007". From 1,480 wines roughly one third was red.

97 2003 Salzberg, G. Heinrich
97 2003 M1 rot, Gerhard Markowitsch
97 2004 Schwarz Rot, Johann Schwarz
97 2004 Blaufränkisch Mariental, Ernst Triebaumer
95 2004 In Signo Sagittarii, Heribert Bayer
95 2004 Melusine Rot, Marion Ebner
95 2004 Merlot Premium, Christian Fischer
95 2002 "G", Gesellmann
95 2003 Steinzeiler, Kollwentz
95 2003 Rêve de Jeunesse, Pöckl
95 2003 Blaufränkisch Dürrau, Franz Weninger
95 2003 Pinot Noir Grand Select, Wieninger

Hard to get, though.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Paul B. » Sun Oct 29, 2006 12:03 pm

Bill, thanks for posting on this great topic.

I have had a soft spot for Austria, the country, as well as its wines - both red and white - ever since I got into wine back in 1997. I actually got interested in Austrian wines not based on the whites but on the reds; Blaufränkisch and Zweigelt are so enjoyable that I really have a tough time picking out a favourite between them ... though if pushed I will edge towards Blaufränkisch for its sometimes hard acidity but also the glorious meaty/beefy/peppery character that makes the wines so utterly fantastically food-friendly.

A couple of recent Austrian reds, however, have disappointed me because they seemed to be made in the notorious international mould: highish alcohol and about 3 g/l r.s. - a travesty to my palate. Give me solidly crafted, bone-dry Austrian reds with edgy acidity and beautiful astringency - this is what I love to put on my dinner table.

I think that Austria's wines are more rarely seen in our part of the world largely due to the country's relatively smaller volume output compared to the giants of France and Italy and other New World countries that sell to places like Ontario en masse. But Austria surely is a wine-drinking country, and this fascinates me. What I also love about Austria is that it is a Germanic red-wine producing nation: Germany surely produces reds, but I think that Austria's reds definitely have an edge over Germany's.

A very hearty Tschüss to all our Austrian friends.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by David M. Bueker » Sun Oct 29, 2006 12:05 pm

The best Austrian reds tend to be prohibitively expensive in the USA, if they can be had at all.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Sun Oct 29, 2006 12:08 pm

Bob Ross wrote:I sent a note to the Austrian Wine Marketing Board asking for retail shops that have a good selection of Austrian wines, especially reds, in the US.

If they respond, I'll revert.

Regards, Bob

http://www.weinausoesterreich.at/eindex.html


Bob, its really tough to find the reds up here!!
BTW, new malbec posting!!! Keep em coming eh. I am just getting going!!!
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Bob Ross » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:40 am

Thanks, Mark. Interesting shop.

I got a reply from Vienna this morning:


Dear Mr. Ross!

Please visit our homepage http://www.winesfromasutria.com ->search & service ->importers.
There you'll find a list of importers in your country!

Best regards from Vienna

Sonja Prem
Marketing Assistent

Oesterreichische Weinmarketingserviceges.mbH (OEWM)
Austrian Wine Marketing Board (AWMB)
[t] +43(1)5039267 [f]: +43(1)5039268 ISDN: +43(1)5039269
A-1040 Wien/Vienna Prinz-Eugen-Straße 34
http://www.weinausoesterreich.at / http://www.winesfromaustria.com


Sonja's english language link isn't working this morning, but you can get to the page through http://www.weinausoesterreich.at/eindex.html

Regards, Bob
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Victor de la Serna » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:23 am

I am increasingly impressed with blaufränkisch, a.k.a. lemberger. Of the big family of Alpine grape varieties, this belongs in the same class as the great 'light, elegant' type with such luminaries as pinot noir and nebbiolo. Our friend Dirk van der Niepoort of Porto and his Austrian wife Dorli Muhr are now producing an amazingly refined blaufränkisch in the Carnuntum region near Hungary, which should enthuse Burgundy and Barolo fans alike!
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Dave Erickson » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:31 am

David M. Bueker wrote:The best Austrian reds tend to be prohibitively expensive in the USA, if they can be had at all.


Not true. We have Hillinger Zweigelt for $13.99 and Glatzer Zweigelt for $12.99; we had Hillinger St. Laurent (a wonderful pinot-like red with a peppery finish) on special at $15.99 for a while. We have Anton Bauer "Wagram Reserve" for $18. We have his pinot noir for $25, and a truly amazing cabernet sauvignon for $30.

On the white front, you can get Bauer's crisp and lovely Gmork GV for the laughable price of $9.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Eric Ifune » Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:52 pm

I can't add to the excellent wines listed above. It is difficult to get the better Austrian reds here in the states. I was lucky enough to live in Europe for awhile and had good access then. I agree that prices here are twice or three times that in Austria. I have to add that I am extremely partial to Austrian Pinot Noir.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Paul B. » Mon Oct 30, 2006 2:00 pm

Victor de la Serna wrote:I am increasingly impressed with blaufränkisch, a.k.a. lemberger.

Victor, I certainly understand your sentiment.

Blaufränkisch is a grape I first discovered based on its Hungarian iterations; in Hungary it goes by the name of Kékfrankos. Spicy, vervey, brightly acidic and food-friendly reds - just wonderful wines.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by David M. Bueker » Mon Oct 30, 2006 2:06 pm

Dave Erickson wrote:
David M. Bueker wrote:The best Austrian reds tend to be prohibitively expensive in the USA, if they can be had at all.


Not true. We have Hillinger Zweigelt for $13.99 and Glatzer Zweigelt for $12.99; we had Hillinger St. Laurent (a wonderful pinot-like red with a peppery finish) on special at $15.99 for a while. We have Anton Bauer "Wagram Reserve" for $18. We have his pinot noir for $25, and a truly amazing cabernet sauvignon for $30.

On the white front, you can get Bauer's crisp and lovely Gmork GV for the laughable price of $9.


Please note that I said "the best." I agree that you can buy good Austrian reds for reasonable prices, but the best are out of sight.

And for what it's worth, I have the Gmork GV in my cellar.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Victor de la Serna » Mon Oct 30, 2006 4:45 pm

Paul B. wrote:Blaufränkisch is a grape I first discovered based on its Hungarian iterations; in Hungary it goes by the name of Kékfrankos.

I spent a week in Hungary last August, and as usual when I go there (I've been a fan of Hungarian food and wine for almost 30 years...), I drank quite a bit of kékfrankos. Overall, I think quality is better in Austria, but the Sopron area does produce some very fine examples like Weninger's Spern Steiner Kékfrankos Selection...
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Dave Erickson » Mon Oct 30, 2006 5:20 pm

David M. Bueker wrote:
Dave Erickson wrote:
David M. Bueker wrote:The best Austrian reds tend to be prohibitively expensive in the USA, if they can be had at all.


Not true. We have Hillinger Zweigelt for $13.99 and Glatzer Zweigelt for $12.99; we had Hillinger St. Laurent (a wonderful pinot-like red with a peppery finish) on special at $15.99 for a while. We have Anton Bauer "Wagram Reserve" for $18. We have his pinot noir for $25, and a truly amazing cabernet sauvignon for $30.

On the white front, you can get Bauer's crisp and lovely Gmork GV for the laughable price of $9.


Please note that I said "the best." I agree that you can buy good Austrian reds for reasonable prices, but the best are out of sight.

And for what it's worth, I have the Gmork GV in my cellar.


Pardon my failure to read closely. I have not been exposed to the top-tier wines you describe. Let's say price is no object...what should I be looking for?
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Clint Hall

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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Clint Hall » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:07 pm

Victor de la Serna wrote:I am increasingly impressed with blaufränkisch, a.k.a. lemberger. Of the big family of Alpine grape varieties, this belongs in the same class as the great 'light, elegant' type with such luminaries as pinot noir and nebbiolo. Our friend Dirk van der Niepoort of Porto and his Austrian wife Dorli Muhr are now producing an amazingly refined blaufränkisch in the Carnuntum region near Hungary, which should enthuse Burgundy and Barolo fans alike!


Interesting. A few wineries here in Washington State make "Lemberger," but while this a fun wine, a good companion for, say, barbecued hamburgers on a hot summer day, no Lemberger that I know of here is taken very seriously.
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Michael Pronay » Tue Oct 31, 2006 12:11 pm

Paul B. wrote:A very hearty Tschüss to all our Austrian friends.

Note that "tschüss" is considered a German import into the Austrian version of German . . . :twisted:

Dave Erickson wrote:Pardon my failure to read closely. I have not been exposed to the top-tier wines you describe. Let's say price is no object...what should I be looking for?

That's an easy one: Just take a look at the list I posted further up in this thread (Sun Oct 29, 2006 3:32 pm).
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Paul B. » Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:06 pm

Michael Pronay wrote:Note that "tschüss" is considered a German import into the Austrian version of German . . . :twisted:

Woops! And here I thought it was Austrian all the way.

So what would the really Austrian way to say "see ya" be?
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Re: Favorite Austrian Red Wine Grape

by Michael Pronay » Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:56 pm

Not an easy question, because quite different throughout the country. Widely used — but of course not possible in this context — would be "ciao" (quite obviously we're less thin-skinned against Italian imports! :D )

"Grüß Gott" would be an option, "Herzliche Grüße" or "einen schönen Gruß nach Österreich" others, but all rather formal.

"Servus" would probably the best choice. This, btw, is a Latin import via Hungary: It was the traditional greeting between officers of the Honvéd, the Hungarian army in Hapsburg times (and spelled "szervúsz", of course!).
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