About Austrian Wine

About Austrian Wine
Although Austria is not among the top fifteen wine producing nations in the world (it ranks 18th), it has received a great deal of attention as of late. Much of this has to do with its signature white wine, Grüner Veltliner, a medium-bodied, aromatic, sleek white with very good natural acidity. As consumers are looking for wines to accompany fusion and other healthy cuisines, Grüner has been a natural fit.

Austria is primarily a white wine nation (two-thirds of vineyards are planted to white varieties); other successful whites include Riesling, Chardonnay and Pinot Blanc (known as Weissburgunder). Some of the greatest Austrian wines are the remarkable dessert wines made from Riesling, Muskat and other varieties. The most exclusive of these are trockenbeerenauslese, which are incredibly rich with exotic honey, raisin and caramel flavors, moderate sweetness and the structure to age for decades. The best of these are highly limited (they are only produced in exceptional years) and expensive, costing as much as $75-$100 per half bottle.

Red wines include Zweigelt, Blaufrankisch and Blauburgunder (Pinot Noir). Reds in Austria have higher acidity as well as more herbal notes than many other reds from around the globe; this may account for their limited sales, despite the excellent quality and their structure for aging.

Top Picks for Austria

Hugl Weine 2018 Rosé Zweigelt
89 points
Best Buy
Pink coral color. Aromas of ripe watermelon, cherry yogurt, and lily with a silky, vibrant, dryish light body and a smooth, cheery pomegranate, lime spritz, chalk, and tarragon finish with no oak flavor. A clean, easy-drinking rose that exudes summer.
89 points $12.99 Best Buy
Schlumberger 2017 Brut Rosé Austria
88 points
Amber beige color. Aromas of dried apricot and raspberry with a silky, vibrant, dryish light body and a tingling, interesting, medium-length grilled white peach, mango lassi, strawberry granola, allspice, and lime zest finish with a suggestion of oak flavor. A crisp, refreshing sparkler with sophisticated notes of apricot and spice.
88 points $27.99
Skeleton 2017  Gruner Veltliner
85 points
Straw green color. Aromas and flavors of lime, valencia orange, and yellow apple with a supple, crisp, dryish light body and a graceful, fast finish with nuances of white tea and almond. A crisp and youthful white for anytime sipping.
85 points $9.99