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Hofer Gruner Veltliner Freiberg 2012

Gruner Veltliner from Austria
  • RP91
0% ABV
  • WE91
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2.7 4 Ratings
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2.7 4 Ratings
0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This one-of-a-kind styled Gruner Veltliner Freiberg is rich, creamy and exotic and is also juicy and lacquered.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Hofer 2012 Gruner Veltliner Freiburg – their only site-specific wine of this vintage that I’ve tasted, and usually their best – displays an exuberant freshness and (at 13%, relative) alcoholic levity such as can by no means be taken for granted from this grape and vintage. Subtle scents of hay and clover, lima bean and apple, mingle with a suggestion of sea breeze. Infectiously juicy, glossy and satin-textured on the palate, this features lady apple and honeydew melon with prominent but invigoratingly integrated piquancy of their pip and rind. Sweet lime, raw almond, and musky rose radish emerge over several hours, while saline and alkaline notes lend saliva-inducement to a lusciously lingering finish.
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Hofer
Hofer, Austria
The Hofer family farms vineyards in Auersthal, a dead-still little wine village in the Weinviertel, just barely beyond Vienna’s northern suburbs. The gently rolling hills in in this village are made up of deep loess soils and are planted predominantly to grüner veltliner, in addition to some zweigelt and riesling. Additionally, the Hofers grow organic grains; rye, barley, and alfalfa. These grains are raised for consumption, and are used as cover-crops in their vineyards.

There was a time when only a small amount of wine was produced at the farm of Hermann Hofer’s parents, but the quality was worthy enough to motivate Hermann to increase production and begin making top-quality wine. Hofer has been making wine since the early 1980s and has been certified organic since 2001 by the group Bio-Ernte, whose standards exceed EU guidelines for organic grape growing.

It is rare to find such high quality wines farmed with such attention and responsibility, especially in the Weinvertel, Austria’s largest growing region and home to many commodity-wine producers. In the cellars at Hofer grapes are de-stemmed, macerated for only a short time, and then vinified in stainless steel with the goals of typicity and freshness in mind.

Certified-Organic Estate

Appreciated for superior wines made from indigenous varieties, Austria should be on the radar of anyone who loves bright, elegant wines. These food-friendly, cool-climate reds and whites are quintessentially European in style with racy acidity, moderate alcohol, and tart, fresh fruit flavors. Austrian wines are prized for their near-uniform dedication to excellence, and it is now difficult to find a bad bottle.

Rather than joining in on the worldwide trend to plant international varieties, Austria has chosen to stake its reputation mainly on its native grapes. Grüner Veltliner, known for its racy acidity and vegetal and peppery aromatics, is the most important, comprising nearly a third of Austrian wines. Riesling in Austria is high in quality but not quantity, planted on less than 5% of the country’s vineyard land. Unlike their German counterparts, Austrian Rieslings are almost always dry, with higher alcohol, slightly lower acidity, and flavors that lean more toward the citrus end of the fruit spectrum. Field blends of these two grapes along with Pinot Blanc and other white varieties known as Gemischter Satz are popular for daily consumption in Vienna. Red wines include light, tart-fruited Zweigelt, juicy and spicy Blaufränkisch, and Pinot-Noir-like Saint Laurent.

Gruner Veltliner

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Difficult to pronounce yet delightfully easy to drink, Grüner Veltliner is indigenous to Austria, where it has long maintained its status as the nation’s most important white grape. It became trendy among America’s wine elite in the mid-twenty first century, and has since proven itself to be more than just a fad, becoming a mainstay on the shelves of wine shops and the pages of restaurant wine lists for those who enjoy a crisp and refreshing yet serious white wine. Grüner Veltliner performs well in cool climates, and is gaining ground in chillier pockets of California and New York’s Finger Lakes.

In the Glass

Crisp and refreshing with plenty of lively acidity, Grüner Veltliner is marked by telltale notes of white pepper and a slight vegetal quality reminiscent of green beans, as well as a streak of minerality. When less ripe, it leans toward the lemon/lime end of the fruit spectrum, while additional hangtime at harvest can lend notes of pink grapefruit and even stone fruit. A hint of spritz on the palate is not unusual.

Perfect Pairings

Grüner Veltliner is a wonderfully versatile wine—it can pair with just about any lighter fare, from seafood to poultry to complex salads. It even works with spicy foods, and can be a classic pairing with Asian dishes.

Sommelier Secret

When it comes to foods that are notoriously difficult to pair, Grüner Veltliner has been known to step in and save the day. The sulfur compounds naturally present in asparagus can imbue a wine with a highly unpleasant metallic taste, while artichokes’ cynarin compound typically cause the taste of a wine to turn unpalatably sweet. Grüner Veltliner not only manages to avoid these issues, but actually serves to complement these foods with its sharp, pungent, vegetal flavors.

WVWAHF057_2012 Item# 157181