I love trying new wines, especially if it is a grape I have not previously enjoyed. As I journey through the world of wine I would like to try every grape varietal available in my lifetime. Did you know there is a club called The Wine Century Club? The club is not about wine snobbery; rather, it is for the wine adventurer and membership is free. If you had tried 100 grape varieties then you qualify as a member; if not but are on your way you are welcome to attend all the Wine Century Club events.
The Wine Century Club: “The Club for adventurous wine drinkers who’ve tried 100 grape varieties or more.”
The reason I mention this is because a few weeks ago I added a new grape variety to my repertoire; Austria’s own Grüner Veltliner. Though I was familiar with this grape I had never had it or any Austrian wine. I was shopping at my local Central Market one Saturday and the store was a flurry of activity celebrating Greek Fest. In addition to the great Greek wine being poured and food samples being prepared, Central Market was pouring wine samples from all over the world. When I came upon the man pouring this lovely Austrian wine I had to try it. Furthermore, the food pairing that was being offered peaked my curiosity even more.
Höpler Grüner Veltliner 2013: This wine poured a translucent pale gold into the glass and met the nose with an array of citrus, stone fruit, ginger, honey and a touch of crushed stone. On the palate this wine offered refreshing flavors of lemon, lime, grapefruit, white peaches, wih soft herbal notes, a touch of almond and minerality. This wine was soft and elegantly structured with very round acidity offering a clean finish. If you have never tried this varietal I would compare to Sauvignon Blanc, Grenache Blanc and some Dry Rieslings. SRP $11.99.
While researching this article I found out Grüner Veltliner is known for exceptional food pairing capabilities. The element I found so pleasing was at Central Market the taster was serving the wine with sushi and it was the young sushi chef who instructed me to taste the wine with the crab based sushi; he said the pairing was amazing….he was right! The wine offered such a crisp and acidity with such refreshing flavors that I think it would pair great with lighter dishes. It is recommended with traditional Austrian Weiner Schnitzel (if it grows together it goes together); I can just taste that delicious pairing. It would also pair great with soft, creamy cheese. However, the pairing with the sushi was outstanding and worked great for me! If you are ever looking for a hard to pair lighter dish or sushi (which I feel is notoriously hard to pair) seek out Grüner Veltliner!
From Höpler’s web site: A good wine will find its own balance. It takes time. It takes passion. And it requires sensitivity. We give our wines as much time as they require. We bestow as much passion as we have on them. And we use as much sensitivity as it takes. Our wines grow and mature in harmony, develop strong characters, and find their own identity. Their origins always remain tangible, and their homeland ever present. We allow our wines the freedom to find their own balance and, in return, they thank us with highest quality
- Höpler’s Winery is located in Breitenbrunn located South East of Vienna on the West bank of Lake Neusiedl
- They have 46 hectares (114 acres)
- They produce 50% white wine, 45% red wine and 5% sweet wine annually
- 70% of their wine is exported to US, D, NL, UK, DK, NO, CHF, JAP, MY
- They export to 35 US states
- Every 10th bottle of Höpler Austrian wine is exported to the US
I encourage you to seek out Höpler wine from your local wine retailers and if you have not already add Grüner Veltliner to your list of grape varietals. Now, I have to go tabulate my number to see if I can join the Wine Century Club.
My Song Selection: The song I have chosen to pair with Höpler’s 2013 Grüner Veltliner is from one of my favorite bands. The wine was crisp and refreshing, easy, flavorful and pleasing just like “Sara Smile” from Hall and Oates.
Get your own bottle of Höpler’s 2013 Grüner Veltliner and let me know what song you pair with it. Cheers!