Nikolaihof Gruner Veltliner Hefeabzug 2010
Gruner Veltliner from Austria
#65 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2012
This 2011 vintage is especially detailed and snappy and you seem to taste every pebble and each lee. Light but long, like spring water or a high-mountain white wine, with great aging potential.
Wine Spectator - "This powerful, plush-tasting Grüner boasts concentrated flavors of apple tart, baked peach, ruby grapefruit and gooseberry. Unctuous in the midpalate, with a lingering finish of smoke and spice notes. Very expressive. Drink now through 2020."
The Wine Advocate - "Despite early-harvest, the Nikolaihof 2010 Gruner Veltliner Hefeabzug weighs-in at, for this bottling, relatively robust over-12% alcohol, which is all the more surprising considering that this wine has seldom exhibited a more delightful sense of levity. There is almost a sweet sense to the crisp green bean, apple, and pear succulently displayed on a lushly-textured, lees-enriched palate. A refreshing thread of lemon juice and a sense of crushed stone suffusion speak to the brightness and mineral density characteristic for this vintage at its best, while a bittersweet, Pinot Blanc-like suggestion of corn shoots adds to the stimulation of a long finish."
Nikolaihof is the oldest wine estate in Austria, whose history goes back almost 2000 years to Roman times. A walk round the estate is like a trip back through history.
The main elements of the present-day appearance of Nikolaihof date from the fifteenth century, but everywhere one is constantly bumping into remains of the old Roman fortress. Every age has left its traces behind. Today Christine and Nikolaus Saahs receive their guests at receptions and wine tastings under the restored Gothic vaulting of the deconsecrated chapel. View all Nikolaihof Wines
About AustriaView a map of Austria wineries The country of Austria is steadily growing in both wine production and quality. The rise in popularity can be partly attributed to the success of Grüner Veltliner, the most-planted grape of Austria. As a landlocked country Austria has a decidedly continental climate. Most Austrian wine comes from the region of Lower Austria, which happens to be located in the northeast corner of the country, but called as such because of its lower elevation level. Within Lower Austria are many sub-regions, the most well-known being Wachau, Kremstal and Kamptal. To the south of Lower Austria is Burgenland, known for producing good reds and sweet whites. Styria is the furthest south, on the border of Slovenia and produces very little of Austria's total wine production. Wein, or Vienna, is its own region as well, a little enclave inside of Lower Austria.
Notable FactsBeyond the delicious Grüner Veltliner, Austria's white grape varieties include Riesling, which can make both sweet and dry wines, Weschriesling, Sauvignon Blanc and some Weissburgunder, (we know it as Pinot Blanc). In reds the best grapes are Blaufränkisch, a red grape also found in Germany, which creates wines that are strong and structured, and usually from Burgenland. Another red coming out of the country is the indigenous crossing (one of the parents is Blaufrankisch), Zweigelt (zuh-VYE-gelt). This is a big and fruity red, usually best drunk young, and quite pleasing.
Austrian Wine Laws & LevelsLike Germany, wine quality is determined by the must weight of the grapes when picked – in other words, the ripeness level. Austria is fairly strict when it comes to their wine laws. The first level of quality is Tafelwein, regular table wine and by far the most produced. Next is Landwein, one step up from Table wine and with more regulations.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.
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