Most of the wine in Austria comes from the eastern side of the country by Vienna. Renommee (€14, ZW+CS), HST 2013 (€13, ZW+BF) and CS M1 2013 €22. Very good St. Laurent and Pinot Noir year after year and the price/quality is top notch. Although the scandal was a terrible thing to happen to the country of Austria and the livelihood of many honest people in the Austrian wine industry, it was probably the best thing to ever happen to Austrian wine itself. Third place went to Winzerhof Ronald Kiss from Jois for the Gamay Jungenberg 2013. The 1985 austrian wine diethylene glycol scandal. was excellent. Corks finally pop for Austrian wine 29 years after antifreeze scandal with Waitrose selling 53 per cent more than last year. 9. Weingut Johann Gisperg (http://www.weingut-gisperg.at) from Teesdorf . In fact, wine has been part of the culture in the Austrian region for over 4000 years but this amazing history has been obscured by the "antifreeze scandal" of 1985, when it was revealed that some wine brokers were adulterating their wines by adding the harmful substance diethylene glycol to their product. There are several reasons for this: history, climate, terroir and one of the strictest and newest wine regulatory regimes in the world following the 1985 diethylene glycol scandal when several Austrian wineries were found to be adulterating wine with this toxic substance. All 3 wines have excellent price/quality ratio. In 1985 government scientists discovered anti-freeze in bottles of fine Austrian wine, seriously damaging the country's reputation as a wine … Recent reports indicate that Italian authorities have seized over 160,000 liters (roughly 220,000 bottles) of counterfeit Rosso and Brunello di Montalcino worth approximately $1.3 million. Zweigelt is a key grape variety in this region. Much stricter wine laws were also enacted by Austria on August 29, 1985 which is now one of the strictest standards in the world and since then a term “Qualitätswein” or “Quality wine” is applied to all wines produced in Austria. Rust was granted the status of Freistadt (free city) by Emperor Leopold I in 1681, partly because of his wife's love of the local sweet wines. The Cabernet was kept for 36 months in new barrique and Blaufränkisch in a mix of new and old. It worked. This winemaker has always been consistently good, but in the last few years he has started to pick up the trophies - one after another. This is one of the best winemakers in Thermenregion and his Merlot Classic 2013 (Price €9.60!) Many of the adulterated wines were found to originate in Wagram in Lower Austria, where a consulting wine chemist was prosecuted. Rotweingut Maria Kerschbaum (http://www.weingut-kerschbaum.at/htm/home/start.php) from Horitschon, Mittelburgenland - the Blaufränkischland. Austria, like so much of Europe, celebrates a long history of winemaking, and many chapters of European winemaking will be familiar to the connoisseur. The Austrian authorities quickly realised that … After a 1985 "glucose" scandal that saw unscrupulous winemakers using anti-freeze on their grapes, Austrian winemaking has returned to its organic origins, producing some of the best wines in Europe. This meant that the wines would be less sweet and more acidic than desired and this led some unscrupulius wine producers to modify the wines. Other white grape varieties like Welshriesling, Chardonnay (called here Morillon). Another Burgundermacher. Grüner Veltliner accounts for approximately half of the white grape variety volume but other important varieties to mention are: Welschriesling, Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc), Riesling, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Gelber Muskateller, Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris) and indigenous grape varieties like Rotgipfler and Zierfandler. The Austrian wine making industry thrived first under the Babenberg and then Habsburg rule with its peak in the 16th Century, when the total wine growing area was three times more than nowadays. His Badnerberg 2012 (Sankt Laurent and Merlot) were very good, but at considerably higher price of €31. Find out everything you wanted to know about the key wine producing areas of the world with their recommended wines. All wines are excellent although still young and will benefit from ageing of at least 1 year in a cellar. The Pinot Noir Reserve (€16.5) and St. Laurent Reserve are highly recommended as Johnann is one of the best Burgundermachers in Austria. On July 9th 1985, the Federal Ministry of Health in Bonn issued an official health warning against the consumption of Austrian wines, and the news quickly spread around the world. Austria produces only a fifth as much wine as Australia – … There is a growing interest in high-quality wines in Austria. This is very old grape variety is a great source for zesty sparkling Roséwein. It consists of the following three sub-regions: The first one is not only the home for Traminer, which is a regional speciality, but also for Burgundy style white wines like Grauburgubder (Pinot Gris), Weissburgunder (Pinot Banc) and Chardonnay. Winzerhof Kiss (http://www.winzerhof-kiss.at) from Jois. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. There is a distinctive tension common to all these wines which should be emphasised, based on seven factors. The cuvee K11 Grand Reserve Kerschbaum 2011 €36 was also super. I suppose that Gallo’s Red Bicyclette was sort of a scandal for the region/US. 2013 vintage is not yet released, but 2012 available and he has a nice wooden box with those 4 different wines (http://shop.juris.at/de/weine/pinot-noir-lagen/pinot-noir-2012-lagen-holzkiste.html), The Pinot Noir Breitenteil 2012 was ranked third in Austria last year in the grape category and Ina'mera 2012 also third in the Cuvee category. Austria was, rather surprisingly, the third largest producer of wine globally in the 1920s, mainly producing and exporting simple light white wines. The scandal involved several Austrian wineries which illegally adulterated their wines to make them appear sweeter and more full-bodied in the style of late harvest wines. BobCampbell.nz offers access to Bob's latest wine reviews, news and opinions. Stiegelmar (http://www.stiegelmar.com/en) from Gols. HST - Hannes Steurer (http://www.hannessteurer.at/sortiment) from Jois. Grüner Veltliner has similar aromas but can often show more fruit and freshness than Chardonnay. The mass-circulation Kurier newspaper reported that one of the suspects in the tainted wine scandal had admitted to helping produce ″many million liters of artificial wine″ in the last few years. After the 1985 scandal, quality in Austrian wines has become one of the main goals of any producer and this is certainly confirmed by facts. I remember my first visit to a Heuriger, the day I arrived in Vienna in September 1984, and the morning after. VIENNA, Austria -- Four wine makers have been arrested for allegedly using a lethal antifreeze solution to sweeten their wine in a scheme that has threatened the future of Austria's wine … There were no wine growers involved or sentenced but criminal wine merchants who altered cheap wine to ‘Spätlese/Auslese’ style wines and shipped it in tank to Germany where it was bottled and sold. The Pinot Noir Hochreit 2013 and Pinor Noir Breitenteil 2013 (both €31 Euros each), Pinot Noir Setzluss and Haide at the same price. Südburgenland is the smallest region however it also offers a good selection of white and red wines and also local sparkling speciality called Uhudler (made of Isabella grapes, which are permitted to grow only in this region). Steiermark is undoubtedly the most beautiful region and the one, which offers one of the best Sauvignon Blancs in Europe if not the world. At the time Germany was the most important export market for Austrian wine with the wines of a similar style to those produced by Germany itself, notably semi-sweet and sweet white wines, but sold at a lower price. blank blank. dry, etc), as well as the official Federal Inspection Number and name of the producer or bottler.. Scandal Over Poisoned Wine Embitters Village In Austria - August 1, 1985 (New York Times) Austrian Wine Scandal Rocks Import Industry From Sea To Sea - August 22, 1985 (Orlando Sentinal) Toxic Chemical Scandal In European Wines Expands - August 22, 1985 (Chicago Tribune) Weingut Amsee (http://www.wein-amsee.at) from Gols. The estimate was that the lethal dose of a ‘glycol wine’ was about 25-30 litres at a time….. Visionary winemakers, a raging natural-wine debate and revelations on a scandal aren't what I was expecting when I joined buyer Freddy Bulmer on his first buying trip to Austria earlier this year; but I was completely blown away by the passion, innovation and incredible wines I … The Austrian Wine Poisoning | Down the Rabbit Hole - YouTube In those days, a good bottle of Austrian red wine was a miracle. The fungus penetrates the outer wax layer of the grapes and induces a shrivelling and concentration of taste and aromas of the finished wine. All four Pinot Noirs are named after particular vineyard the grapes are harvested from. Unfortunately, diethylene glycol, an ingredient in antifreeze, is poisonous. It seems that the facts may have become slightly distorted after 33 years. Important! So the image of ‘two Austrian wine growers one on the southern and one on the northern side etc…’ is wrong and misleading. In Austria, winemaking is credited to the Celts — dating back to the 8th century BC — as is evidenced by numerous excavations along the Amber Road, an early trade route between the Baltic and Mediterranean Seas. Leopold Aumann (https://www.aumann.at/de) from Tribuswinkel. We have chosen a few of these for you to browse through in our online wine shop. The first non-Austrian wine in the rating was a 1998 Byron Chardonnay, Nielson Vineyards, Mondavi (California) in fifth place. Cover vegetation balances the relatively high temperatures of the Pannonian climate, whilst well ventilated leaf canopies and autumn fogs from the Neusiedlersee ensure that the grapes dry quickly after rainfall which means ideal conditions for the development of noble rot. Niederösterreich is the largest wine growing region and it includes the following eight specific wine growing sub-regions: The first six sub-regions are predominantly white wine producing areas with a focus on Grüner Veltliner, Riesling and Weissburgunder. One of the favourites amongst non-Burgundermachers (along with Juris - another Stiegelmar). The practice was uncovered by German wine analysis labs who performed quality tests on wines sold in Germany.  He also has a very nice BF DAC Leithaberg 2013, which is a smaller brother of Jungenberg and quite enjoyable been now and costs €15. A must weight of at least 30 degrees KMW at harvest is required for Ruster Ausbruch and the finished wine has a optimal alcohol content of 12%. The market for Austrian wine, especially the semi-sweet styles then in favour, evaporated overnight. Some Austrian exporters had entered into long-term contracts with supermarket chains to supply large quantities of wine at a specified quality and in poor vintages much of the grape harvest did not reach sufficient ripeness levels. Austrian wines are not big sellers in Florida but the diethylene glycol scandal that has rocked the European wine industry has begun to create waves of anxiety among Florida wine … Austria’s wines are now highly prized both by wine experts and wine lovers all around the world. Industry and government have launched campaign to regain lost markets abroad. Three hundred and fifty Austrian white wines have been found to contain the chemical, which health authorities warned can cause kidney, liver … My recent article about the Austrian wine scandal, Accolade to sell Petaluma and Krondorf wineries, Australia wins big at Decanter World Wine Awards 2020, https://www.therealreview.com/2019/01/09/austrian-wine-scandal-setting-the-record-straight. Both Blaufränkisch are mind-blowing: Blaufränkisch David's Show Reserve 2012 €20.9, Blaufränkisch Reserve Dürrau 2012 €24.2. Austria Battles to Recover From Wine Scandal - Los Angeles Times Shortly after the scandal, the Styrian bard Volker Schöbitz composed a polka under the rhyming title Zum Wohl, Glykol - "Cheers, glycol". CS Neuberg is a winner of CS category for 2 years in a row and Blaufränkisch Jungenberg is a winner in the category BF this year. Austrian wine If you're after versatile wines to match many popular recipes – Rieslings for Indian curries and roast duck or chicken, Grüner Veltliner for Thai, Chinese and Vietnamese dishes, and lighter-style reds like St Laurent which is similar to Pinot Noir, then take a look at Cellar's collection from all over this diverse winemaking country. 28,000 litres of Ruster Ausbruch as well as gold had to be handed over to acquire the status. The first wine discovered to contain DEG was a 1983 Rüster Auslese from a supermarket in Stuttgart, analysed on June 27, 1985 and a 1981 Welschriesling Beerenauslese from Burgenland was found to contain 48 grams per litre of diethylene glycol meaning that one bottle could have been lethal or irreversibly damage the kidney, liver and brain. “Qualitätswein” is produced from the grapes grown in three federal states of Austria: Niederösterreich, Burgenland and Steiermark and they are defined as wine growing regions. By using diethylene glycol, it was possible to alter both sweetness and the body of the wine. Austrian consumers are increasingly interested in premium wines and are willing to pay more for them. Your email address will not be published. Officially there are 35 grape varieties which can be grown in Austria: 22 white wine varieties and 13 red wine varieties. Still, if you do not live in Austria, Germany or Switzerland (or do not have friends who live there ), it is quite unlikely that you have come across Austrian wine since only a fraction of it is currently being exported (with more than 90% into other EU states). Wines that have passed through a panel of blind tasting can bear the label, "Cercle Ruster Ausbruch", with the Ruster wine Charta signed in December 2005 by leading producers in the area. Second place went to Kreutzer and winemaker Albert Gesellmann with his Bela Rex 2013 Cuvée. Pinot Noir, Thermenregion vineyard, Austria. There was a time where Austrian wines were shadowed with doubt. There are four sub-regions: Neusiedlersee is the largest sub-region in Burgenland and the one which boasts the many top wine producers, several of which are internationally recognised and awarded. Austrian wine exports practically collapsed overnight and its reputation as a winemaking nation was torn to shreds. The short-term effect of the scandal was a complete collapse of Austrian wine exports and a huge dent in the reputation of the Austrian wine industry as well as in Germany similar in scale to the VW diesel engine emissions scandal uncovered in 2015. it took the Austrian wine industry over a decade to recover. All three categories of wines tasted were won by Austrian wines. Austrian Wine Scandal Item Preview podcast_witness-history-witness-archi_austrian-wine-scandal_1000401601931_itemimage.png . this wine has won multiple awards). The Grande Cuvee 2013 (€12.5, cuvee of Zweigelt and Rathay), Cabernet Sauvignon "100 days" 2013 €16 and his flagman Massiv 2012 (€32, cuvee of BF, Rathay, ZW and CS. Carnuntum, which is situated next to Burgenland and Pannonian plains, enjoys a lot of sunshine hence the focus here is on the red wines predominantly made of Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch. The wine scandal has been the subject of many satirical references to Austrian wine, both inside Austria, in Germany and beyond, and lasting long after 1985. Zweigelt is the most well known Austrian red grape variety and it accounts for almost 50% of the total red wine production. Weingut Juris (http://www.juris.at/en/weingut/) from Gols, chief winemaker (Axel Stiegelmar) has consistently good wines year after year. Cabernet Sauvignon Alter Satz 2012 (€39) and Blaufränkisch v36 2012 (€34) were both excellent. One of the convicted Wagram winemakers, Karl Grill, proprietor of Firma Gebrüder Grill, committed suicide after being sentenced to a prison sentence. Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), “Austrian wine scandal – setting the record straight”. First place in the tasting was awarded to a 1990 Grüner Veltliner "Vinothekfüllung" Smaragd, Knoll (Wachau, Austria) with an average rating of 18.09 points, followed by a 1997 Grüner Veltliner "Ried Lamm", Bründlmayer (Kamptal, Austria) with 17.78 points. Grüner Veltliner has been recognised to be a white grape capable of producing wines with a great richness, complexity and ageing potential equalled only by by top class Chardonnay and Riesling wines. He estimates tasting over 100,000 wines since he began to formally record tasting notes. Although, Thermenregion is mainly a white wine producing sub-region focusing on indigenous Rotgipfler and Zierfandler it is also famous for the red Burgundy style wines and this is where excellent Pinot Noir and Sankt Laurent (St. Laurent) wines come from. Westeiermark is a Schilcher (Blauer Wildbacher) region. The St. Laurent Reserve 2013 (€15.70) and new cuvee Contrast 2012 €16.5 (SL, Rösler, Zweigelt, Merlot) are also recommended. My recent article about the Austrian wine scandal attracted a response from a friend of mine who runs a wine school in Austria. . Weingut Dopler (http://www.tattendorf.at/dopler/) from Tattendorf. ... Labels will have to indicate the wine's exact origin, quality and content. Rust is a key city in this area as it is famous for its Ruster Ausbruch, a sweet, concentrated wine produced from grapes affected by noble rot (Botrytis cinerea) as a result of the areas climatic conditions. Mittelburgenland is a Blaufränkischland and the vast majority of wines produced there are based on this grape variety. The Austrian wine-tainting scandal a year ago has reduced the nation's wine exports to a trickle this year. His SL Reserve 2012 (€17) was a winner last year in the St. Laurent category and it is still available for sale. Australian wines sales also suffered because people confused it with Austria. After the fall of the Roman Empire, most of the current wine growing regions in Austria were abandoned and only with the arrival of the Cistercian monks, the Burgundian viticulture methods were reintroduced and enhanced. Right now the Austrian wine industry is doing the best it's ever done and making some of the best white wines in the world. Austria's Wine Laws Tightened in Scandal. But it took the Austrian wine industry many years to recover (2001 wine exports recovered to pre-1985 levels) and it still has an impact on the reputation of the country's production despite it happening over 20 years ago. Austrian wine scandal – setting the record straight. Eventually, someone died, a scandal was born, and Austrian wine sales tanked. Archeologists have confirmed that people had been planting grapes in Austria since before the Roman Empire and with its arrival the wine growing became even more organised. The Austrian wine-tainting scandal a year ago has reduced the nation’s wine exports to a trickle this year. Austria not only recovered from this scandal, but today has emerged as one of the most impressive, quality-oriented wine regions, operating under some of the most exacting wine regulations in existence. If the wine is from Austria, the label must say so. The dramatic changes resulting from the Austrian wine scandal of 1985 have seen no other European country experience the “wine mania” occurring there since the early nineties. At the 2015 event there were 121 winemakers invited to attend the event with 350 wines. Austrian Chardonnays and Grüner Veltliners were compared to some of the world’s most prestigious Chardonnays from Burgundy, California, and Australia.The tasting panel featured participants such as the wine writer Steven Spurrier, of Judgement of Paris fame.Seven of the first ten places were occupied by Austrian wines, with Knoll, Bründlmayer (2x), Velich, Prager, Loimer, and Freie Weingärtner Wachau, beating Louis Latour and Baron Thénard (Burgundy), Gaja (Italy) and Mondavi (California), The highest-rated Chardonnay of the tasting, placed third, was the Chardonnay Tiglat 1997 by Velich (Burgenland, Austria). Get to know more about Austrian wine by seeing the country’s layout and learning about its 3 top grape varieties. An embarrassing wine scandal in 1985 almost did in Austria's wine reputation, oddly caused by a few insiders attempting to aid some of the country's lower caliber wines by adding unauthorized agents to the wines. The Top 5 Wine Scandals . Volume wise, 2/3 is presented by white and 1/3 for red. Nevertheless, in terms of quality and value Austrian wine is notable versus its more famous competitors in Europe such as Burgundy and Italy. In 1985 the huge scandal with the illegal additive diethylene glycol (a primary ingredient in anti freeze) made the Austrian wine making industry instantly infamous, however in a long run it served a very good purpose. However, this thriving industry was nearly brought to its knees in the 1980s when a scandal broke. Bob Campbell MW was the second wine writer in the world (after Jancis Robinson) to become a Master of Wine. Austrian health officials on Thursday also said that their investigation of adulterated wines had uncovered a production of fake wines. The growth in the premium segment has been driven by Austrian wines, which have gained in quality over the years, following the diethylene glycol wine scandal in 1985 (see Box 1). Among the top winemakers were the wineries Netzl, Kollwentz, Gernot and Heike Heinrich, Preisinger, Scheiblhofer, Werner Achs, Umathum. His Pinot Noir Reserve (€17) and Cuvee Lindberg (€19.50, PN+SL) are also very nice. Burgenland is a home of full-bodied red wines thanks to long and hot Pannonian summers. The Cabernet Sauvignon Kalbskopf 2013 €18.1, Stiegelmar 2012 (€19.4, ZW+BF+CS) and Zweigelt Ungerberg 2012 €34 are excellent. #Antifreeze #Austrianwine #Austrianwinescandal A blind tasting of international wines carried out on 30 October 2002, organised by the fine wine dealer and collector Jan-Erik Paulson, and hosted by Jancis Robinson MW and Tim Atkin MW, highlighted the quality of its Grüner Veltliner grape. (i) Wine: the wine scandal of 1985 changed Austrian wine-making, and the quality of the end-product, dramatically. Austria's market almost collapsed completely after the 1985 scandal In the months that followed the discovery of the adulteration, several wine makers and dealers were arrested by the Austrian police and the first prison sentence, of one and a half years, followed in October 1985. The grapes have to be carefully picked by hand to ensure quality and gentle treatment, a process knwon as "breaking out". This year he presented Renommee 2013 (€14, cuvee of ZW and CS), CS Neuberg 2013 € 23 and Blaufränkisch Jungenberg 2013 €25. Austria, often better known for its coffee and cake, has been making wine for over 1,000 years but often lingers in the shadow of the countries surrounding it. Some journalist had the idea to choose the catchy term anti-freeze. The dominant white wine grape is the green Veltliner, which yields a fruity, tart wine prized by locals. We've got it all! 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