Tuesday, March 23, 2010

2008 Wimmer-Czerny Roter Veltliner

I've tasted over 200 different grapes and I am on a quest to make it 300. So when I see a wine containing a grape new to me, I usually buy it. One of my recent purchases was at The Wine Bottega, where I found an Austrian wine made from Roter Veltliner.

Though you are likely to think this grape is related to Grüner Veltliner, it is not. Roter Veltliner, which is also known as Roter Muskateller and Roter Reifler, is an ancient grape whose parentage is unknown. "Roter" means "red" though the grape actually only has a pinkish tinge and it makes white wine. "Veltliner" refers to the Austrian village of Veltliner. Some of the best Roter wines are produced in the Wagram district of Austria.

The Wimmer-Czerny winery, which is over 250 years old, is located in the village of Fels Am Wagram, in the Wagram region. This village is about 50 miles west of Vienna on the Danube River. The current owner, Hans Czerny, is committed to minimal intervention in the vineyards and in the cellar. The vineyards are now certified organic and biodynamic. His 15 hectares of vineyards are planted with 60% Grüner Veltliner, 10% Riesling, 10% Roter Veltliner, and the remaining 20% divided between Zweigelt, Weißburgunder, Traminer and Sauvignon Blanc. The winery produces are 80,000 bottles a year.

The 2008 Wimmer-Czerny Roter Veltliner ($20-$22) has a deep gold color, and a pleasing aroma of fresh citrus. It is a very crisp wine, with bright citrus flavors (especially lemon), some mineral notes and mild spice tastes. It was a very easy-drinking wine, with an alcohol content of 12%, and paired well with chicken. Though it did remind me of Grüner in many ways, the interesting spice tastes, reminding me of autumn, gave it a more unique flavor. It is an enjoyable wine and I do recommend it.

No comments: