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Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Robin Garr » Fri Apr 28, 2017 10:48 am

Grüner Veltliner, Blaufränkish (a.k.a. Lemberger), Sankt Laurent, and good old-fashioned Riesling in a land where minerality in wines is sometimes valued as much as fruit ... yes, we're talking about Austria and its wines for May's Wine Focus. We're rolling it out a few days early so I can promote it to readers in today's Wine Advisor, so feel free to begin tasting and talking, if you like, even while we continue with April's attention to Australia.
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Dan Smothergill

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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Dan Smothergill » Fri Apr 28, 2017 8:11 pm

Sauvignon Blanc in South Styria has a rich taste all its own, very different from those from the Loire, New Zealand and elsewhere. We especially liked those by Hannes Sabathi. The Gelber Muskatellers are worth trying too.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Fri Apr 28, 2017 10:06 pm

TN: 2012 Gruber Roschitz Gruner Veltliner Roschitz Weinvie

Domaine not that well -known but long established family, attractive label, SC, good price at $18 Cdn.

Bright light yellow color, nose opened nicely with apple, spice, lime, fruity,
Initial entry thought was not too complex, would be a great summer patio wine. Lively, crisp, apple for sure, some rs, medium bodied, very good acidity with a little carbonation. "Apricot, tasty, not too serious" from across the table.
The wine lacked the complexity of many higher end GVs but as an introduction, this is fine. Food was veal scallopini with penne in a cream sauce.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Tim York » Sat Apr 29, 2017 2:09 am

Bob Parsons Alberta wrote:TN: 2012 Gruber Roschitz Gruner Veltliner Roschitz Weinvie

Domaine not that well -known but long established family, attractive label, SC, good price at $18 Cdn.

Bright light yellow color, nose opened nicely with apple, spice, lime, fruity,
Initial entry thought was not too complex, would be a great summer patio wine. Lively, crisp, apple for sure, some rs, medium bodied, very good acidity with a little carbonation. "Apricot, tasty, not too serious" from across the table.
The wine lacked the complexity of many higher end GVs but as an introduction, this is fine. Food was veal scallopini with penne in a cream sauce.


I looked up this estate. It comes from the Weinviertel in NE Austria near the Czech and Slovakian borders. Most the famous GV and Riesling estates lie along the Danube and its tributaries west of Vienna in or close to the Wachau valley.

I don't think that I have any Austrian wine left in my cellar :( (but my record collection is full of Austrian composers and of German composers who lived in Vienna :D ). Nor do I recall having seen any Austrian wine on sale here but I will look more closely.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Robin Garr » Sat Apr 29, 2017 11:32 am

Hermann Moser 2015 Kremstal Grüner Veltliner "Per Due" "The Spark" ($16)

This clear, light straw-colored wine shows surprisingly bold and aromatic scents for a GV, perhaps hinting at the wine maker's placement of "The Spark" bottling as an introduction to wine lovers unfamiliar with the grape. It's pleasant, though, with luscious aromas of peach and melon and perhaps a floral back note of gardenia. It's rather full-bodied on the palate, but crisp, zippy acidity holds it in balance and positions it as an excellent food wine. Stone fruit and tangy citrus come together in the flavor, with that classic "stony" minerality so typical of Austrian whites showing up alongside the fruit in a very long finish. A gentle 12% makes the decision to have a second glass, or possibly a third, an easy one. U.S. importer: Boutique Wine Collection, Philadelphia, Pa. (April 18, 2017)

FOOD MATCH: It would go well with mild freshwater fish, and it's also excellent with eggs, green vegetables and cheese. An asparagus and goat-cheese frittata made an ideal match. The winery also offers an extensive range of pairing suggestions: "It will go well with Asian food—anything from Vietnamese to Thai to spicy Chinese flavors. You can also try it with seafood or bitter greens and salads. It is versatile and will also complement pork tenderloin, or a dish where the wine's acidity can cut through salt and fat, such as smoked ham."

WHEN TO DRINK: Its good balance and zippy acidity should hold it for a while, and the sturdy metal screw cap is also protective. Still, it's a wine to be enjoyed fresh and young, so I'd drink it up over the next year or two, then watch for more recent vintages.

VALUE:
This wine is a good value in the middle teens; Wine-Searcher.com shows a $14 average U.S. retail.

WEB LINK
Here's a fact sheet from importer Boutique Wines.

FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
Find vendors and compare prices for Hermann Moser Kremstal Grüner Veltliner "Per Due" "The Spark"on Wine-Searcher.com.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Robin Garr » Sat Apr 29, 2017 11:32 am

Markus Huber 2013 Niederösterreich Zweigelt ($20)

Dark garnet, shading to a clear edge. Tart black cherry and cranberry aromas lead into a bright black-fruit flavor structured by zippy, mouth-watering acidity. Soft tannins join in on the palate, and the characteristic Austrian "stony" minerality lingers with tart cherries and a lemon-squirt of citrus in a very long finish. U.S. importer: Broadbent Selections Inc., Sonoma, Calif. (April 26, 2017)

FOOD MATCH: A very good companion with the garlicky flavors of eggplant imam bayildi, cooked with tomatoes and lots of onion and garlic. It would work well, too, with lighter red meat, burgers or pork.

WHEN TO DRINK: It's not an ager, but its protective screw cap should keep it sound for several years.

VALUE:
My $20 local price was out of control. Wine-Searcher.com reports a $15 average U.S. retail, so shop around if you can.

WEB LINK
Here's a winery fact sheet in English on the 2013 Zweigelt. For more information about the Huber winery, see this page on the importer's web site.

FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
Check prices and find vendors for Markus Huber Niederösterreich Zweigelt on Wine-Searcher.com.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by David M. Bueker » Sat Apr 29, 2017 11:39 am

Out of control indeed. That Huber should not cost more than $17, and can be found for $15.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by David M. Bueker » Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:20 pm

2006 F.X. Pichler Riesling Smaragd Loibner Berg - Austria, Niederösterreich, Wachau (4/30/2017)
Rich and very ripe, with tropical fruit dominating, along with a bit of a syrupy character to the palate. Unfortunately it ends up being quite heavy, and the alcohol intrudes all through the wine. This is a poster child for what can go wrong with aging the very ripe 2006 Austrian Rieslings. I have had much better from other producers in this vintage.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Robin Garr » Wed May 03, 2017 11:32 am

Berger 2014 Zweigelt ($16.99/1 liter)

I’ve reviewed this popular Austrian red several times, but past vintages have been labeled from the Kremstal region; this label claims only “Lower Austria.” Nevertheless, it is very similar in style to the 2013 bottling tasted last August. It’s a clear ruby color, not too dark, almost transparent at the edge with bright crimson glints against the light. Red-berry and tart cherry aromas fill the glass, giving way to tart cranberry fruit on the palate, mouth-watering acidity and just a whiff of soft tannins in a very long finish. U.S. importer: Skurnik Wines, NYC., a Terry Theise Estate Selection.

FOOD MATCH: It went very well with garlicky, fennel-scented sausages with sauerkraut and mashed potatoes. Its food-friendly acidity would fare well against a broad range of fare, from burgers and hot dogs at a summer picnic to pork chops, ham, or cheese dishes.

WHEN TO DRINK: It’s not a long-term keeper, but the beer-bottle-type crown cap on earlier vintages (as seen in the bottle image at right) has given way to a sturdy metal screw cap, which may provide greater protection over two or three years.

VALUE:
$12 average U.S. retail on Wine-Searcher.com, but prices vary widely around the country, all the way from $13 to $19, so it’s worth shopping around. Still, with this liter bottle containing fully one-third more than a standard bottle, it’s a pretty good value even in the middle to upper teens.

WEB LINK
Here's an importer's fact sheet on Weingut Erich & Maria Berger. This page offers links to all the Berger wines, including the 2014 and 2016 Zweigelt.

FIND THIS WINE ONLINE:
Check prices and find vendors for Berger Zweigelt on Wine-Searcher.com
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Wed May 10, 2017 11:15 pm

As I air my 2013 Rabl Riesling, here is a note posted last year on their GV.

WTN: 2013 Rabl Gruner Veltiner Spiegel, Kamptal.

$20 Cdn, 12.5% alc, SC. Quite a well-known producer but not really up with the big names it would appear? I have to say right off the bat that over 2 nights, I seem to have drunk two seperate GVs :?: .

Nose aromatics very attractive, apple, pear, minerality. Not that tropical but gushing aroma.
The initial entry had some muted flavors and an indistinct mid-palate. Sure did not match the nose. "So-so acidity here..not the most complex wine" from across the table. Also the salt and pepper wings did not help!
However gotta say that with air there was some nice development here with more citrus/grapefruit, apple, but could not find much pepper here. Things really picked up on day 2 with a firmer mineral finish that had good length. I feel many would not be impressed with this GV initially but given time, quite a transformation in the glass.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by win_fried » Fri May 12, 2017 6:14 am

Saturday I went to a wine fair of a local dealer. This months focus let me focus on the red wines of Weingut Gernot Heinrich from Burgenland. I tasted the RED 2013 (sappy, but a little bitter), the Zweigelt 2015 (soft, round, red berries), the Blaufränkisch 2014 (reductive nose from spontaneous fermentation, a bit edgy), the Pannobile 2014 (55% Zweigelt, 45% Blaufränkisch) (reductive nose from spontaneous fermentation, a bit acididic, I probably did not understand this wine).

I went home with a case of

Heinrich St. Laurent 2013 Closed with vinolok. Color: Deep purple :D In the nose cherry, elderberry and a hint of leather. On the palate still a bit tight, red fruit, sour cherry, good acidity, sappy, chalky minerality, round, a hint of wood, medium length. Very nice at 15,50€. The wine probably is ready to go but will stay on that level for a couple of years.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Fri May 12, 2017 11:12 am

Nice note..v poor selection of reds up here :( .
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Tim York » Fri May 12, 2017 12:06 pm

Bob Parsons Alberta wrote:Nice note..v poor selection of reds up here :( .


You are lucky in Edmonton, Bob. I've seen neither reds nor whites here. I went to a caviste in Caen yesterday who has by Norman standards a fair selection of foreign wines but no Austrians :( . How I miss Belgium in that respect. There was an Austrian avant garde artist http://www.ryslavy.com/art1.html , who imported Austrian wines as a side line and boasted a very fine selection http://www.ryslavy.com/winekurt.html . He lived in a fine town house in Molenbeek which has recently acquired an unenviable reputation as a breeding ground and refuge for jihadist terrorists :shock: . He gave regular tastings at his home.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Rahsaan » Fri May 12, 2017 1:01 pm

Tim York wrote:There was an Austrian avant garde artist http://www.ryslavy.com/art1.html , who imported Austrian wines as a side line and boasted a very fine selection http://www.ryslavy.com/winekurt.html . He lived in a fine town house in Molenbeek which has recently acquired an unenviable reputation as a breeding ground and refuge for jihadist terrorists :shock: . He gave regular tastings at his home.


Was he active 10+ years ago? I remember on a trip to Brussels around 2003-2005 that I went to a private house which supposedly had the best selection of Austrian wine in the city. I'm forgetting the details but I remember being struck by the fact that there was no list and I had to chat with the man about what I might like to buy and what he might have. If it is the same fellow, it appears his web/information presence has greatly developed!
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Tim York » Fri May 12, 2017 4:59 pm

Rahsaan wrote:
Tim York wrote:There was an Austrian avant garde artist http://www.ryslavy.com/art1.html , who imported Austrian wines as a side line and boasted a very fine selection http://www.ryslavy.com/winekurt.html . He lived in a fine town house in Molenbeek which has recently acquired an unenviable reputation as a breeding ground and refuge for jihadist terrorists :shock: . He gave regular tastings at his home.


Was he active 10+ years ago? I remember on a trip to Brussels around 2003-2005 that I went to a private house which supposedly had the best selection of Austrian wine in the city. I'm forgetting the details but I remember being struck by the fact that there was no list and I had to chat with the man about what I might like to buy and what he might have. If it is the same fellow, it appears his web/information presence has greatly developed!


Rahsaan, I guess it was the same guy. There are not so many Austrian wine specialists in Brussels selling from private houses. I can't recall when I first went there (maybe < 10 years ago) but IIRC he always had a printed wine list but the website is more recent. We were spoilt for a wide choice of the world's wines in Belgium (except oddly the USA's) though many of the best sources were outside Brussels.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by David M. Bueker » Mon May 15, 2017 10:30 am

2014 Schloss Gobelsburg Grüner Veltliner Renner - Austria, Niederösterreich, Kamptal (5/14/2017)
For the last several vintages I have had the opportunity to enjoy this wine at a very nice restaurant in Poland. Their pricing has been very close to US retail, so a very easy buy, depending on the food I ordered. Last night was a menu based on asparagus, so Grüner Veltliner seemed like it would hit the spot. It did very well. Overall I found the '14 to have a more Riesling profile, with lively citrus fruit and less of the pea shoot and white pepper. There was some of that, which worked well with the final risotto, which was itself rather peppery. The acidity was very bright, making for a very different wine from the powerhouse of '13 or the gentle feel of '12.

One other observation regarding the restaurant and the wine. In speaking with the server (who I have interacted with many times over the last few years), I found out that I am about the only person who orders the Renner Grüner Veltliner. They have multiple Gobelsburg wines on their list, and the Renner gets overlooked, largely in favor of the Rieslings. It's unfortunate, as the wine goes very well with much of the cuisine, and it's a fine value. Ah well, more for me.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Mon May 15, 2017 8:16 pm

Reference your GV comment David, I could not agree more. Most wine shoppers do not have much of an idea when looking at Austrian wines and I guess the Riesling does stand out! More GV for those in the know eh.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Bob Parsons Alberta » Thu May 18, 2017 2:44 am

2012 Rabl Riesling Steinhaus Kamptal.

Before heading off to S AB to do my 2 annual May Species bird counts, thought I would check how my small Rabl collection is coming along.

SC, $24 Cdn, opened one hour, cellared 2 yrs, 13.5% alc.

Light lemon in color. Interesting nose which took a while to open up. Floral, mineral aromatics, no gasolein (!), Apple, pear and some smoke which was a surprise (comment anyone).
Off-dry, long aftertaste, mineral tones, very good acidity, citrus.."slate" from across the table. We both thought this wine would be of more interest say 2 yrs down the road. Good buy though.
Food was stuffed chicken breast, mushroom and spinach and a cream sauce.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by David M. Bueker » Fri May 19, 2017 4:22 pm

2013 Schloss Gobelsburg Riesling Tradition - Austria, Niederösterreich, Kamptal (5/19/2017)
Last night in Wroclaw, and the hotel restaurant's stash of Schloss Gobelsburg gets a little bit smaller. This is an interesting blend of richness and precision. It has bright citrus fruit, but also a deep, bass line of richer fruit, as well as overall weight. It's a bit like a 2006 Austrian Riesling, but with better acidity. Lively yet weighty on the palate, it threads the needle of ripe vintage and bright vintage. Delicious.
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Tim York » Wed Jun 07, 2017 2:36 am

I apologise for this late posting but, as I think that I indicated, availability of foreign wines is poor in France. As I had no Austrian wine left in my cellar, I could only write up what I could buy (the same goes for South Africa this month). As it happened I was ordering from a German web seller, included this bottle and could have added some South Africans had I known that the topic was coming up.

It arrived during a heat wave but the wines don't seem to have suffered.

2015 Freie Weingärtner Wachau / Domäne Wachau Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Pichlpoint - Austria, Niederösterreich, Wachau (6/6/2017)
This is a very attractive medium bodied quite dry white showing lightly fragrant aromatics, charming citrus tinged fruit, gentle minerals, a little spice, moderate acidity and backbone. Not enough acidity for good ageing, I think, but good+ now.
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Posted from CellarTracker
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Re: Wine Focus for May 2017, Wines of Austria

by Robin Garr » Wed Jun 07, 2017 9:01 am

Thanks, Tim! No worries, you're always welcome to add to the record.

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