Wine, Wine Reviews

Austrian Wine Tasting 2016 – Toronto

wine tasting

Austrian wineries used pour their wines in Toronto annually to a small but enthusiastic group of drinkers, and then suddenly they stopped visiting Toronto for several years.

This year, 33 wineries decided to come and approximately 160 wines of their wines to the trade and public during two different time slots.

Austria grows grapes between latitude 47 and 48. This small country is relatively flat in the east, and practically all the regions are located here. There are 45,900 hectares under vine mostly planted to white grapes.

Vienna, Niederoesterreich Burgenland, Steiermark, and Bergland represent the main growing regions. Each of these has several appellations. Lower Austria, being the largest, has eight appellations, whereas Vienna has none.

The main grape varieties are gruner veltliner, riesling, welschriesling, weissburgunder (aka pinot blanc), followed by chardonnay, muller-thurgau, samling 88 (aka scheurbe), and other experimental vareities. For red wines, farmers prefer zweigelt, blauburger, blaufrankisch, pinot noir, st. laurent, followed by cabernet sauvignon, and merlot.

White wines dominate production. A relatively small amount of sparkling wines are produced.

There is only one Austrian white wine at the L C B O general list, but almost each Vintages release offers at least one gruner veltliner. The variety is dry, refreshing, fruity, acid-driven, and very suitable to match light foods providing wines originate from single vineyards.

I tasted approximately 70 wines and recommend the following:

White wines

Reserve Gruner Veltliner, 2014, Schloss Gobelsburg,
88+/100

Reserve Geisberg Riesling, 2014, Schloss Gobelsburg
89+/100
Agent – Artisanal Wine Imports

Reserve Kremser Ried Wachtberg Gruner Veltliner, 2014, Stadt Krems,
89+/100

Reserve Steiner Ried Riesling, Stadt Krems,
90/100
Agent B Cojocaru Agencies

Reserve Kieferberg Gruner Veltliner, 2014, Rabl
92+/100

Reserve Schenkenbichl Riesling, 2014, Rabl
92+/100
Agent – David Thompson Vintage Trade

Klassik Kamptaler Terassen Riesling, 2015, Brundelmeyer
93/100

Klassik Zobinger Heiligenstein Riesling 2013, Brudelmeyer
93/100
Agent –  HHD Imports

Reserve Langenlois Steinmassl Riesling, 2013,
88+/1100
Premium Estates Of Austria

Reserve Pfaffenberg Metternich und Salomon Rheinriesling, 2011, Salomon Undhof
92+/100
Agent – Lamprecht International Ltd.

Klassik Pletzengraben Rheinriesling, 2014, Preiss Weinkultur
88+/100
Agent – Merchands Des Amerigues

Steiner Hund Riesling, 2012, Nikolaihof Wachau
90/100
Agent – The Living Wine

Reserve Alte Reben Gruner Veltliner, 2015, Sax
92/100

Reserve Steinmassl Riesling, 2015, Sax
88/100

Reserve Loiserberg Riesling, 2015, Sax
office@winzersax.at

Reserve Seeberg Riesling, 2014, Steininger
89+/100
office@weingut.steininger.at

Reserve Seeberg Riesling, 2012, Weszeli Terra Factum
90/100
weingut@weszeli.at

Sweet wines

TBA (Trockenbeerenauslese ) Scheurbe, 2013, Zantho
91/100
Agent – Noteworthy Wines

TBA Non Vintage, Kracher
94/100
Agent – Philippe Danduran Wines

Beerenauslese, 2012, Esterhazy
91/100
contwein@esterhazy.at

Red wines

Blaufrankisch, 2013, Heinrich Gernot und Heike
89+/100

Rotgipfler, 2015, Johannes Of Reinisch
89+/100

OP Eximium No. 26, 2013, Gesellmann
Weingut@gesellmann.at

Note: Ontario agents are listed below each wine You can place your order with anyone. Minimum order is one case. A few wineries are looking for agents.

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