An estate both admired and beloved within Austria, for hearty yet focused whites and sumptuous deeply structured reds, both of which are undergoing certain deft transitions; the whites more primary (i.e., less malo) and the reds more succulent (i.e., fewer gravelly tannins). ~Terry Theise
What’s “Leithaberg?” A range of low hills behind the north shore of the lake (Neusidl, the shallow one), dividing “Pannonia” from the Viennese plain. Aircraft on their glide-paths landing to the north fly right over it at low altitude. It’s also the name of the local appellation, or “DAC” and before that it was a Brand created by a group of (12, I think) growers, who wanted a name for separate cuvées made in order to show minerality, from the limestony soils of these hillsides.
Many of you didn’t know they make another Chard in the international idiom, with small oak and malo. It’s good of its type, but the last thing I need to do is add to the omnipresent thrum of oaky Chard, so I leave it behind. This year there’s 5% of it in the above cuvée. It starts by making itself felt with a veil of international stuff over the customary stony skeleton, but with air this retreats dramatically and lets the spicy limestone loose to leave its almost Chablis note on the finish. Ends up all rockslide, with just a subtle allusion to oak. Honestly I think it’s wonderful.
CORE LIST WINE.
This is minty and black, very clear and peppery, less gushing and succulent than ’12 but a lot of graphite, stewed tomato and rosemary. Tannin got in my way a little, but Georg promised “with my hand in the fire” that the wine would be its customary juicy self by bottling. ~Terry Theise
Fantastic dicht and kick; sweet fruit to the mid-palate and then the ’14 extracts ride a wave of vigorous acidity into a white-tea leesy-stony finish. Animated, squirming flavor in three acts—and the hero gets the girl. ~Terry Theise
Un-oaked Chard but with lees-contact to give it creaminess, grown on limestone. It’s stonier and quieter than the Pinot Blanc (but also more recently bottled), it has a limestony twang and a crushed-rock texture; curiously lingering finish. It seems to simply need time, as it swells in the glass. Mineral, chewiness, sweet hay. ~Terry Theise