Markus Huber Obere Steigen Gruner Veltliner 2021
Medium yellow-green in color, with aromas of typical Veltliner spice, white pepper, juicy, powerful on the plate. It has pure minerality and a long lasting finish.
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Full reine-claude plum fruit with notes of fresh herbs and chestnuts. Although this only weighs in at 12.5% alcohol and has a very cool personality, it also has plenty of structure and a really long, chalky finish. Although Obere Steigen is legally a brand name, it is an old vineyard-site name. From organically grown grapes. Vegan. Drink or hold. Screw cap.
From a former single vineyard that is today part of the Nussdorfer Alte Setzen, the 2021 Grüner Veltliner Obere Steigen is Huber's most successful wine in domestic gastronomy for many years. Based on vines that average 25 to 30 years of age on loam and calcareous conglomerate soils and predominantly vinified in stainless steel, the 2021 shows a clear, bright, fresh and spicy nose. Elegant and lush on the palate, this is an intense, textured and finely tannic Grüner Veltliner that was fermented with indigenous yeasts to fully dry in three weeks. A smaller part of this cuvée was vinified in oak, which gives this elegant texture and suppleness. This is an excellent gastronomic Veltliner that can be served today as well as in 10 years. 12.5% stated alcohol. Best After 2022.
Absolute focus on the strengths of the region and the unique soil types that are found there ensure that year to year the wines display unmistakable clarity of fruit. "Sustainable development, carefully controlling the harvest and meticulous pruning are the most natural and important prerequisites for successful winemaking", says Markus. "Only that way can there be a harmonious merging of traditional and modern methods that create pure wines of unique provenance and character."
Appreciated for superior wines made from indigenous varieties, Austria should be on the radar of any curious wine drinker. A rather cool and dry wine growing region, this country produces wine that is quintessentially European in style: food-friendly with racy acidity, moderate alcohol and fresh fruit flavors.
Austria’s viticultural history is rich and vast, dating back to Celtic tribes with first written record of winemaking starting with the Romans. But the 20th century brought Austria a series of winemaking obstacles, namely the plunder of both world wars, as well as its own self-imposed quality breach. In the mid 1980s, after a handful of shameless vintners were found to have added diethylene glycol (a toxic substance) to their sweet wines to imitate the unctuous qualities imparted by botrytis, Austria’s credibility as a wine-producing country was compromised. While no one was harmed, the incident forced the country to rebound and recover stronger than ever. By the 1990s, Austria was back on the playing field with exports and today is prized globally for its quality standards and dedication to purity and excellence.
Grüner Veltliner, known for its racy acidity and herbal, peppery aromatics, is Austria's most important white variety, comprising nearly a third of Austrian plantings. Riesling in Austria is high in quality but not quantity, planted on less than 5% of the country’s vineyard land. Austrian Rieslings are almost always dry and are full of bright citrus flavors and good acidity. Red varietal wines include the tart and peppery Zweigelt, spicy and dense Blaufränkisch and juicy Saint Laurent. These red varieties are also sometimes blended.
Fun to say and delightfully easy to drink, Grüner Veltliner calls Austria its homeland. While some easily quaffable Grüners come in a one-liter—a convenient size—many high caliber single vineyard bottlings can benefit from cellar aging. Somm Secret—About 75% of the world’s Grüner Veltliner comes from Austria but the variety is gaining ground in other countries, namely Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and the United States.