Browse Tag


Come to an Alte

[logo]Nigl 1996 Grüner Veltliner “Alte Reben” (Kremstal) – I don’t know if this is fully developed, but it’s drinking awfully well at the moment. Celery dust. The wine’s ripe but precise, with rocks and sweat more dominant than any sensation of fruit. Finishes long, with pepper in both powdered and seeded form. Swirls and evades as much as it envelops. Really quite delicious. (1/10)

Release the Hunds

Nikolaihof 2003 Riesling Steiner Hund “Reserve” (Kremstal) – Steel, wet aluminum…but also, some pointy alcohol. Good balance otherwise. A bit of a victim of its vintage. (9/08)

Zwei settle for less?

[vineyard]Heinrich 2003 Zweigelt (Burgenland) – Despite the year, the wine’s youthfully delicate aromatics have firmed up to something more Bordeaux-like and masculine with age. But there’s been a simultaneous Balkanization of the wine’s former cohesiveness, and while nothing’s yet out of balance, I don’t think that state of affairs will last forever. Grey-black dust has been revealed by the splits and seams, though it was perceivable from the beginning, and the fruit-sweetness has faded. Aging this dubiously-ageable wine was an interesting experience, but I can’t say the result has been improvement. Just change. (5/09)


Loimer 1997 Langenloiser Spiegel Grüner Veltliner “Alte Reben” (Kamptal) – Ripe and fairly mature, with celery and sweet apricot. Is there botrytis in this wine? Cream-textured and rich, though perhaps lacking some length. Tasty. (3/05)

Scott Hochächer

[vineyard]Nigl 1998 Senftenberger Hochächer Riesling (Kremstal) – Elusive, like trying to taste wind. I should note that while I never warm up to this wine, its supplier mounts an enthusiastic defense of its qualities, and I might be in the minority as to its merits. The next day, it’s a little less emotionally distant, but despite a more active texture it still fails to appeal. (4/09)

Piri Mason

Nigl 1998 Senftenberger Piri Riesling (Kremstal) – Dry, dry, dry. Sand and powder. Yet, despite all this desiccation, it’s rounder and fuller than its stablemate Hochächer from the same vintage. But this forwardness comes at a price; the next day finds the wine turned to acrid brownness, and virtually undrinkable. Drink it quickly. (4/09)

Where’s the girlsberg?

[bottles]Hiedler 2000 Riesling Gaisberg (Kamptal) – Marshmallow, peat, and bay leaf. Quite advanced. Long, but soft throughout; whatever nerve this wine once had (and if I recall correctly, it wasn’t much) has left the building. I return to it several times over the course of the evening, and again the next day, but all it does is shove more stuffing into the pillow. Drink up. (4/09)

Pichler of the litter

[vineyard]FX Pichler 2005 Grüner Veltliner Loibner Klostersatz Federspiel (Wachau) – Explodes out of the glass, but I don’t know that there’s as much shrapnel in the blast as I’d like. It’s certainly quite aromatic, drifting into unusual realms of quince and Rainier cherry, and then returning to the familiar homeland of liquefied celery and heady minerality. Its presence on the palate is weighty and impressive. And yet, and yet…it decrescendos on the finish, tailing off to an acidic void. Oh well. (1/09)