Velt.1 Grüner Veltliner '07

Country: Austria
Thoughts: Just prior to the Oregon trip, I came across multiple references to some wine called Gruner Veltliner (and I'm sorry I can't recreate the umlaut in the text here). I think I saw one in an article somewhere, another was a selection on a wine list that I didn't get to. The name kind of stuck in my head, and I meant to look for some in Oregon but didn't get the chance. Once we returned - I and my suitcase, my wife and her cold - I had to do a lot of dinner purchasing for the following week. One night, after a mix-up in communication, I was left waiting while our order was prepared; I took a walk two doors down to Whole Foods. After perusing the regular wine area, I went to a nearby row with all their specials. There, at last, was the wine I'd been reading so much about. Ever-helpful Wiki says that it's a grape that doesn't grow anywhere beyond Austria and the Czech Republic - not exactly Burgundy and Napa. And, in truth, the wine didn't disappoint; you know how I hate building up unfounded hype in my own head. But this wine seemed to have different characteristics of more well-known wines all rolled into one. It had a bit of chard taste to it and there was some definite sauv grassiness to it. The first whiff included a small hint of fruit but mostly there was a burnt smell to it; not in an obnoxious way, mind you, but enough that it had a distinct bouquet. On the tongue, that burnt quality morphed slightly; instead of burnt, it was a peculiar kind of dry. But the smell and taste were close enough (if, in fact, you can really establish those two as a pair) that they seemed to be relates. It almost seemed like I was tasting a little dirt - and I mean that in the most kind way possible. It was like sauv that way, only more intense; the earthiness of the sauv to the fifth degree. It was laid back otherwise, perhaps with a bit of fruitiness, again in a similar proportion as the nose was. The finish was long and strong, going from a brief dryness to a honey that held on. It was an interesting wine in that the best word I could find for it was savory, as in that there was little sweetness per se to be had. Like an anti-pinot grigio. Yet it was a very compelling wine and the radical departure from what I'm used to gives it a high score on the adventure scale. And it's a great value, too.
Do-over? I could definitely see that
Final Grade: B+

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