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Based in the town of Zöbing, Barbara Öhlzelt farms six hectares of vines. Her Grüner Leader is always a go-to bottle for gatherings. The 2019 is very fresh and fun; juicy ripe peach and apples, balanced by green pineapple acidity. Enjoy with salty snacks, salads, light pastas, fresh cheeses! Cari Bernard
The Wagram is a region known for its deep loess soils that can go to a depth of twenty meters before hitting marine sediment. Grown in deep golden loess soil (gelben can be translated as ‘golden’ or yellow), the grapes are gently pressed with a slow fermentation. Riesling grown in a loess soil gives a rounder and fruitier wine compared to Riesling grown in the Wachau. The Ehmoser 2020 Riesling is a pristine example of this juicier style. Aromas of white flowers, cut grass, wet stones and lemon waft from the glass. Spritzy lemon drops with a hint of sweetness tickle the palate enveloped in a soft, round finish. An excellent pairing for Thai food.Giselle Hamburg
Barig is a blend of Gruner Veltliner and Roter Veltliner, with a short period of skin contact, yielding a tasty and very fresh, zippy wine. A great introduction to the world of skin contact wines, and certainly just an introduction, as the profile is still very close to that of a refreshing white wine. Drink with a chill on a warm day!
A pitch perfect dry Riesling in the Federspiel style. We've tasted a lot of good Riesling from 2019 vintage, but it's rare to find one that we can put on the shelf for $20 or less. This offering from the Fischer family gives a nice touch of petrol on the nose, nice density, and a clean finish. Fun fact: the Salmon on the bottle represents the effort of the family to repopulate the Danube with wild Salmon.
The Jurtschich family is one of the leaders of the natural wine movement in Austria and all of their vineyards are certified organic, fermented spontaneously, and made without additives. This bottling is a blend of Pinot Noir, Zweigelt, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The grapes are fermented whole and then stored on the lees for a few months in neutral oak. This is is a plush, textural rosé that is a real stand out, and though ideal for the end of Summer, is one of our favorite Rosé wines for the Fall and Winter months. The wine just arrived from Austria in early August, so it needs a bit of time to open up. No need to decant, but open about 30 minutes before serving if you're consuming it in the near future. -EL
Christoph Heiss has not only taken over the family winery, he's also releasing a few wines as a side project under the 'Malinga' name, using only choice parcels of the family's 12 hectares of vines. Located in eastern Kamptal, the vines grow on mostly loess soils, and the family started conversion to organic farming in 2013. Grapes are hand-harvested and ferment spontaneously, the wine ages on the lees about a year in 500L neutral oak barrels before being bottled unfined/unfiltered and with low sulfur addition. Herbs and pollen on the nose give way to a medium-bodied palate with an oily richness deftly balanced by vibrant acidity. The 2019 is particularly delicious, with a textured, almost waxy mid-palate, and long mineral finish.
This is a really friendly, medium bodied offering from Christoph Heiss, who runs his family's winery in the Kamptal, and also releases a small amount of wine from choice parcels under the "Malinga" name. Rotburger is a cross between Sankt Laurent and Blaufrankisch, and this one shows the fresh St. Laurent snap, and the brambly wild berry and black fruit profile of Blaufrankisch. Great on its own with a chill, perfect for summer sipping, but definitely has some material, so better chilled, not ice cold. Grapes go through whole cluster carbonic maceration for 10 days, and wine is aged for about 9 months in 500L Austrian barrels. -EL
While the first officially documented appearance of Blaufränkisch did not occur until 1862 when the grape was included in a viticultural exposition in Vienna, it is likely that the grape is much older and has perhaps been around as long as the Middle Ages under a variety of Fränkisch synonyms. During the Middle Ages, the wine from this region was highly praised, and grapes that were thought to be capable of producing superior wines were called Fränkisch to distinguish them from the less highly prized Hunnic grapes. Under it's youthful guise, the wine reveals a deep, inky purple robe. Although diplaying an earthy, mineral nose, the palate is redolent of dark currents with bright acidity, silky tannins, enveloped in a lush, full body with a profoundly timeles finish. A wine with which to contemplate eternity and mortality while devouring roasted game meats or barbecue. -GH
Vom Stein is a parcel behind the town of Mautern, which is on the banks of the Danube in the famous Wachau region. It is one of the principal vineyards that Nikolaus and Christine Saahs farm at the Nikolaihof estate. Soils here are a mix of loess, loam, and Danube gravel. Grapes spontaneously ferment and the wine ages for six months in large, oak casks.
"A full-bodied red wine that you can open and drink straight away, but which also has potential for a few years.It is based on Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch. Rounded off with a little Merlot. The aging takes place in small, used wooden barrels, after all, it should taste down-to-earth and, above all, bring a lot of drinking pleasure into the glass. Dark ruby red; fruity and delicate bouquet with aromas of spices. Full-bodied on the palate, smooth texture, fine tannins in the finish. Uncomplicated and in a good mood." Hans Nittnaus
Bernard Ott is a fourth generation winegrower in the region of Wagram in lower Austria. His family has been cultivating vines and making wine since 1889. When he took over from his father in 1995, he began to improve the family estate by converting to biodynamics and making positive changes in the cellar as well. Ott is considered an icon in the world of Austrian wines and is a major figure in the world of biodynamic winemaking. Am Berg is made from organic Gruner Veltliner grapes grown in loess soil. The grapes are sourced from younger estate vines and purchased from growers in Feuersbrunn. Natural fermentation in stainless steel, left on the fine lees until bottling in February. A delightfully zesty rendition, full of lip smacking minerality and salinity with a faint spritz, leading to notes of lemon curd, green apple and white pepper with a concentrated, long finish. Bring on the Thai food!
Bernard Ott is a fourth generation winegrower in the region of Wagram in lower Austria. His family has been cultivating vines and making wine since 1889. When he took over from his father in 1995, he began to improve the family estate by converting to biodynamics and making positive changes in the cellar as well. Ott is considered an icon in the world of Austrian wines and is a major figure in the world of biodynamic winemaking.
Am Berg is made from organic Gruner Veltliner grapes grown in loess soil. The grapes are sourced from younger estate vines and purchased from growers in Feuersbrunn. Natural fermentation in stainless steel, left on the fine lees until bottling in February.
A delightfully zesty rendition, full of lip smacking minerality and salinity with a faint spritz, leading to notes of lemon curd, green apple and white pepper with a concentrated, long finish. Bring on the Thai food!
Sankt Laurent, Blaufränkisch, Rotburger, and Merlot sourced from higher parcels in the Rosenberg, Altenberg, and Ungerberg vineyards, hand-harvested, the grapes ferment spontaneously and age separately for 18 months in neutral 500L barrels, blended and bottled unfiltered with low sulfur added. Black plums, soy sauce, black pepper, deep savory spice wafts up from the glass, belying the fresh and juicy palate of tart raspberries, plums, violets with well-integrated structure. Cari BernardFun fact: The name Pittnauski is an homage to Gerhard's favorite movie, the Big Lebowski.
The old adage of the iron fist in a velvet glove applies here. Organically farmed, this Sankt Laurent was fermented with native yeasts and spent one year in used 500 Liter Stockinger barrels. Presenting a dark ruby/purple robe, she comes across as opulent and velvety. A heady nose of iron rich minerals and dusty blackberries with a hint of herbaceousness waft from the glass. The palate bursts with earthy yet fresh mineral-rich notes of cherry and red berries. Silky tannins, delicate spice and a lovely long finish are signature characteristics. Very bright acidity is tempered by it's velvety mouthfeel and body. A true class act. -GH
From the red gravel and loess Eisenhut parcel, this is a fantastic Roter Veltliner, with nice weight and potential for aging. The wine was aged in large stoneware casks that Soellner purchased from auction shortly after World War I. Roter, when basic and at an entry-level, can often have bright acidity, but lack material to balance it out. This Roter, however, is far from basic, and shows the depth and complexity that can be attained from this lesser known Veltliner. -EL
The Stadlmann family has been making wine since the 1780s in the Thermenregion; sheltered from the northern winds by the Vienna Woods, it is one of Austria's warmest wine growing areas. The 'Classic' line of wines are aged in large, used barrels to showcase the true character of the grape and terroir. Cari Bernard
It's Riesling...but not quite...that's right, it's Welschriesling from the southeastern border with Hungary. Welschriesling is an eastern European clone found in Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia and Slovakia. The aromatic profile most often calls upon flavors of young fruit and flowers. Elderberry, chamomile, green apple and vineyard peach are common aromatic descriptors. The most ambitious wines have been known to contain the heady smell of quince with vivid minerality. Straka's wine hails from Rechnitz, which sits 360 m above sea level on the slopes of the Geschriebenstein, the highest mountain in the Burgenland. The vineyards climb as high as 500m and are known for their unique geological soils -- a combination of crystalline schist and magmatic deposits that can only be found in 3 other places in the world. It is a very windy and dry area which cools off considerably at night. This results in very few pests, no need for herbicide or any other treatments and crisp clear mineral-driven wines with good acidity and fruit with notes of lemon, salt and green apple. Minerality coupled with high acidity lead to a savory finish. Seemingly innocuous but insidiously layered. -GH