Thursday, 6 June 2013

2012 Grüner Veltliners from Pfaffl

Guest post by Nik Byrne

The Austrian producer Pfaffl has just released the 2012 vintage of their Grüner Veltliners and there are are some impressive wines.

Grüner – sometimes colloquially called GV or groovy – is at home in Austria, where it accounts for about a third of the country's wine production. If you've never tried grüner, then expect crisp white wines, often with a kick of pepper and spice to them.

Pfaffl 2012 'Wien.1' (RRP £11.50)

A blend of riesling, grüner and pinot blanc that makes up Pfaffl's entry-level wine.More simple than the other wines below, but it is the cheapest of the lot. Citrus fruit with a little zing, and low alcohol, make it a great option for a BBQ in the park.

Pfaffl 2012 'Hundsleiten' Grüner Veltliner (RRP £20.50)

This is the kind of wine to make you realise how great grüner can be: it's got all the hallmarks of crisp apple with spice, and there is pepper for days. This is a refined wine with an extremely long finish. A wine that is truly world class.

Pfaffl 2012 'Goldjoch' Grüner Veltliner (RRP £27.00)

Made from 100% grüner, like the Hundsleiten, but much riper and fruitier. There's also less of the spice, as such it's richer and bigger on the palate. Tropical fruit and citrus are the key flavours, but for me this overshadowed by the less expensive Hundsleiten.

Pfaffl 2012 'Hommage' Grüner Veltliner (RRP £46.00)

Now this is something altogether different: a grüner veltliner that is fermented in Austrian acacia wood barrels. This is a complex wine takes over your palate with all kinds of flavours: tropical and citrus fruit, smoke and spice. Interestingly, it's bottled in a Burgundy shape bottle rather than the traditional GV bottle.

All the Pfaffl wines are imported by Astrum Wine Cellars. Pfaffl also do some red wines – including zweigelt and pinot noir – which are worth trying, but the gruners are the gems. Look out for the iconic angled label design.

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