While 30-plus grape varieties are grown in Austria, gruner veltliner is the one to keep your eye on. It’s the highest quality and Austrians devote the most vineyard acreage to it.
I recently tasted a gruner veltliner produced by Carlisle and was unduly impressed. Vintner Mike Officer is revered for making old vine zin, but it turns out he’s also quite gifted with this dry white.
The Carlisle, 2013 Steiner Vineyard Sonoma Mountain, Sonoma County Gruner Veltliner ($34) is as refreshing as the surf. This wine has tasty notes of grapefruit, lime and mineral. It’s buoyed with bright acidity, which makes this crisp white deliciously racy.
In Austria white wine is usually served with meat, and gruner veltliner is tasty pick for the traditional dish of wiener schnitzel. Why not be bold and try this cross cultural marriage of white wine with meat on our home turf? Fried chicken is a good place to begin because a dry, racy gruner veltliner will play up the fried goodness of the chicken.
With 10 seconds left in this communique, why not make a plan? Pick a meat dish, marry it with a gruner veltliner and then report back.