While the LCBO’s selection of Austrian wines is limited, the land of Ahhhnold offers some light and lively gems.
Zvy-Gelt Zweight 2009, $12.55
With a label inspired by Russian artist Alexander Rodchenko, this bottle is made from Zweigelt, Austria’s workhorse red grape. Serve with grilled mushrooms.
Ponce notes: “Light-bodied with notes of cherry and black pepper, it does a spot-on impression of a Beaujolais. And like Gamay-based wines, it needs a 30-minute chill to temper the tart acidity.”
Yonder Velt Grüner Veltliner 2011, $12.85
A newcomer to the LCBO, this white is made by the Müller Winery, a family-owned operation in the Kremstel region. Try with wiener schnitzel.
Ponce notes: “An intriguing bouquet of apple Jolly Ranchers yields to savoury notes of celery and white pepper on the palate. Medium-bodied with prickly acidity, it’s a terrific summer aperitif.”
Hiedler Grüner Veltliner Trocken Langenlois Thal 2010, $23.95
From Vintages, this single-vineyard Grüner comes from the Kamp Valley, just north of the Danube. Drink now with fried shrimp, or cellar for up to five years.
Ponce notes: “While on the pricey side, it offers the heights of a Mozart piano concerto compared to the poppy monotony of ‘Rock Me Amadeus.’ Expect citrus and green apple flavours with a beguiling salty undercurrent and zesty acidity.”