Austrian Wine

Writings, reviews, photographs, and other musings on Austrian wine from Vinography.
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Weingut Nigl, Kremstal, Austria: Current Releases    If you begin in the medieval town of Krems, and turn your back on the Danube to instead follow the Krems river from where it hits the Danube back up a narrow valley, you will eventually find yourself in the village of Senftenberg, gazing up at an ancient church perched on a rocky promontory overlooking the valley, itself overshadowed by the crumbling ruin of a castle. If you bring yourself right up to the base of the escarpment, you may...

Weingut Nigl, Kremstal, Austria: Current Releases If you begin in the medieval town of Krems, and turn your back on the Danube to instead follow the Krems river from where it hits the Danube back up a narrow valley, you will eventually find yourself in the village of Senftenberg, gazing up at an ancient church perched on a rocky promontory overlooking the valley, itself overshadowed by the crumbling ruin of a castle. If you bring yourself right up to the base of the escarpment, you may...

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger, Wachau, Austria: Current Releases    Standing at the edge of the Danube on a cold spring day, gazing at darkening clouds above the picturesque church of Spitz that is set against a natural bowl of steep terraced hillsides lined with vines, it would be so easy to imagine that you are actually looking backward through time. Other than the modern highway snaking past this little village at the northern end of Austria's Wachau wine region.... Read More...

Weingut Franz Hirtzberger, Wachau, Austria: Current Releases Standing at the edge of the Danube on a cold spring day, gazing at darkening clouds above the picturesque church of Spitz that is set against a natural bowl of steep terraced hillsides lined with vines, it would be so easy to imagine that you are actually looking backward through time. Other than the modern highway snaking past this little village at the northern end of Austria's Wachau wine region.... Read More...

Leithaberg, the beautiful rolling hills that are the last vestiges of the alps before they flatten into the Pannonian plain and skip across the border to Hungary.  On these limestone and schist riddled hills, Blaufränkisch, Austria's greatest red grape variety, works its magic.

The Beauty of Blaufrankisch: Tasting Wines from Leithaberg, Austria

Some of the world's greatest sweet wines are produced by Winelaubenhof Kracher in Austria's Burgenland region. The nearby Neusiedlsee, a shallow reed-filled lake, produces Botyrytis, the noble rot that is required to take the local grapes and turn them to liquid gold.

Some of the world's greatest sweet wines are produced by Winelaubenhof Kracher in Austria's Burgenland region. The nearby Neusiedlsee, a shallow reed-filled lake, produces Botyrytis, the noble rot that is required to take the local grapes and turn them to liquid gold.

It seems like they have always been there. For centuries, the monks have been rooted as firmly as their grape vines, watching empires come and go, tending their secrets as carefully as the grapes and the sacred wines they produce. Shrewd investment and politics have brought great wealth through the ages -- palaces and vineyards, coffers and buildings. Not to mention the troves of knowledge. But time does not preserve all -- neither fortunes nor knowledge -- and one day...

It seems like they have always been there. For centuries, the monks have been rooted as firmly as their grape vines, watching empires come and go, tending their secrets as carefully as the grapes and the sacred wines they produce. Shrewd investment and politics have brought great wealth through the ages -- palaces and vineyards, coffers and buildings. Not to mention the troves of knowledge. But time does not preserve all -- neither fortunes nor knowledge -- and one day...

Zweigelt, one of the trinity of Austrian red grape varieties, makes some interesting wines, all with plush, cushy tannins and very pretty fruit.  Here's my tasting notes and thoughts on this grape variety.

Zweigelt, one of the trinity of Austrian red grape varieties, makes some interesting wines, all with plush, cushy tannins and very pretty fruit. Here's my tasting notes and thoughts on this grape variety.

Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases    "This can't be the way, there's nothing out here," I hear myself saying as my traveling companion and I dutifully follow the GPS into a landscape so pitch black that our high beams barely make a dent in it. All we can see is a rutted dirt road extending in front of us for as far as the beams can see, with a hill falling steeply off to the right and the edge of an embankment to the left, so close that we'll never be able to pass...

Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases "This can't be the way, there's nothing out here," I hear myself saying as my traveling companion and I dutifully follow the GPS into a landscape so pitch black that our high beams barely make a dent in it. All we can see is a rutted dirt road extending in front of us for as far as the beams can see, with a hill falling steeply off to the right and the edge of an embankment to the left, so close that we'll never be able to pass...

Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases    "This can't be the way, there's nothing out here," I hear myself saying as my traveling companion and I dutifully follow the GPS into a landscape so pitch black that our high beams barely make a dent in it. All we can see is a rutted dirt road extending in front of us for as far as the beams can see, with a hill falling steeply off to the right and the edge of an embankment to the left, so close that we'll never be able ...

Weingut Fred Loimer, Kamptal, Austria: Current Releases "This can't be the way, there's nothing out here," I hear myself saying as my traveling companion and I dutifully follow the GPS into a landscape so pitch black that our high beams barely make a dent in it. All we can see is a rutted dirt road extending in front of us for as far as the beams can see, with a hill falling steeply off to the right and the edge of an embankment to the left, so close that we'll never be able ...

There are certain places in this world that feel as if they exist outside of time. Or perhaps they exist inside of time but move much slower than the world around them. As I stepped through the doorway into the inner courtyard of Weingut Nikolaihof, a stones throw from the Danube, and saw the morning light filtering down through the century-old linden tree, the world narrowed down to this quiet bounded space. Gravel crunched under my feet, and there was a stillness...

There are certain places in this world that feel as if they exist outside of time. Or perhaps they exist inside of time but move much slower than the world around them. As I stepped through the doorway into the inner courtyard of Weingut Nikolaihof, a stones throw from the Danube, and saw the morning light filtering down through the century-old linden tree, the world narrowed down to this quiet bounded space. Gravel crunched under my feet, and there was a stillness...

It's hard to imagine an age when wine might have literally been seen as treasure. Certainly those of us with the privilege of living in first-world countries take the idea of drinking wine for granted as an everyday pleasure. There was a time, however, that wine, especially the good stuff, was more valuable than gold in some places in this world. So valuable, in fact, that it could be used to buy your way out from underneath the control of an empire.

The Sweet Taste of Freedom: Austria's Ruster Ausbruch Wines


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