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« Enemy of the State: Foreign wine drinkers | Main | Minerality I: Mineral Water Wine »

20 February 2006

5 Fun Austrian Facts

Lawa_comingsoonw_1_1 Five things you always wanted to know about Austrian wines, but were afraid to ask.

1
Even though Austria is further south than Germany, and therefore closer to the equator, its climate is more eXtreme - with colder winters and hotter summers.  As a result, Austrian wines are generally more full-bodied - with higher natural alcohol levels than their German neighbors.  Compare this German Riesling with an Austrian Riesling.

2
Around 70% of Austria's wine grapes are white, yet there are some nifty, red grapes lurking about.  Three to seek out are: Blaufrankisch, St. Laurent, Blauburgunder (AKA Pinot Noir)

3
Vienna is literally a wine capital.  There are more than 1,700 acres of vineyards within the city limits.  When you visit, you can try some of this fine urban wine in one of the city's numerous Heurigen

4
Certainly you've heard of Grüner Veltliner - Austria's flagship white wine.  It's sorta, kinda like a hearty Riesling with citrus twist and dash of pepper.  However, did you know there are two mutant clones of this grape?  One is Roter Veltliner and the other is Brauner Veltliner.

5
As a historic part of the Austro-Hungarian empire, Hungary's Tokaji was the spotlight grabbing sweet wine when it came to Austrian wein.  However, Austria has its very own dessert wine destination - Burgenland.  Specifically the area around Neusiedler See (Lake Neusiedel) is quite well known for its Ausbruch wines.

Interested in learning more about Austrian wine?  Watch this space.

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