Austria’s 4000 years of winemaking history has seen more twists and turns than a downhill skier. It careered off-piste for a bit with mass-production, got walloped navigating several wars and hit some bumpy moguls at the hands of phylloxera and scandal, but it seems to have tucked itself into a more streamlined position and is building up some serious momentum. Adopting a “small is beautiful” approach Austria is concentrating on boutique wines. It produces some very serious Rieslings as well as some fantastic reds, which are remarkably chunky for such a cool climate. Once upon a time it was seen as a clone of Germany, but where the Germans have struggled to make their wine fashionable, Austria has implemented its secret weapon: Grüner Veltliner.
As sharp as the edge of a ski and more refreshing than face planting into a snow drift, Grüner Veltliner is one of the most food friendly wines out there. The characteristics of this grape variety are mineral, citrus and peach flavours, combined with an unusual spicy note akin to white pepper and the ability to be so fashionable you could drink it in lederhosen and a Tyrolean hat and still look cool.
Instantly recognisable with its flag topped bottles, Austrian wine has found its course and is now speeding towards the finish line while its competitors just watch, wonder how and shake their cow bells in congratulation.
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£10.75Gruner Veltliner (100%)3Light Full bodied2Dry Sweet
£11.50Zweigelt (50%), Blaufränkisch (40%), Merlot (10%)
£12.00Riesling (100%)3Light Full bodied1Dry Sweet
£15.25Zweigelt5Light Full bodied1Dry Sweet
£21.00Pinot Noir (100%)Suitable For VegetariansSuitable For Vegans
£24.00Zweigelt (55%), Blaufränkisch (40%)