Home Winners > Winners 2017 > Austria

Winner Details


2017 Gold: 3 Silver: 6 Bronze: 3 Commended: 7
2016 Gold: 4 Silver: 1 Bronze: 3 Commended: 4

It’s an oddity that, while somms generally love Riesling, they seem to struggle somewhat with versions from Austria. We’ve only had a handful of Golds in the last three competitions – and none at all this year.

Instead, we got a strong performance from the country’s USP variety, Grüner-Veltliner. It’s pushing it to say that it’s big with the public, but it’s certainly gathering momentum among the cognoscenti, and our tasters knew what they wanted from the variety, and more or less got it.

If you’re a submitter, you should think about putting in more Austrian reds, by the way. The number of entries is always limited, but somms love them.

And a special mention to Eschenhof Holzer for picking up a second consecutive Grüner Gold with its super well-priced Zero-G.


‘Most of the Grüners felt too bland and flat. I want to lick the rock, to taste the terroir.’ Andrea Briccarello, team leader

‘I put Grüner on the tasting menu, it’s a food-friendly wine. What I’m looking for is good minerality, spiciness, nice acidity.’ Lionel Periner, team leader

‘There were some attempts with oak [in Grüner], but I didn’t find them very successful. The best way is the fresh way, that shows terroir.’ Marek Rakowski, Harbour Heights Hotel

‘I could see that Blaufränkisch with a burger…’ Andrés Ituarte, Coq d’Argent

‘Gemischter Satz can be really good, and really good value. I like that point of difference, loads of varieties, all mixed together.’ Charlie Young, Vinoteca

‘With the reds, all these dishes came into my head. I could imagine my clients saying “wow, this is different”. Michael Moore, The London Cookhouse 

Award winners

Found 19 wines


Eschenhof Arnold Holzer, Zero-g, Grüner-Veltliner 2016, Wagram, Austria

Gold medal winner

A convincing, great-value Gold, this Grüner had ‘a fresh nose, touches of spice and plenty of freshness on the palate, hints of pear and apple fruit with savoury almond notes,’ began Vinoteca’s Charlie Young, with Harbour Heights Hotel’s Marek Rakowski noting ‘ripe citrus with a hint of white pepper – classic GV style at a good price’. ‘Lovely with Thai chicken curry,’ thought team leader Annette Scarfe MW.

£8.27 Berkmann Wine Cellars

Hirsch, Kammerner Lamm, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Kamptal, Austria

Gold medal winner

Judges lavished this Gold Lister with praise. ‘Lovely nose, complete, and showing good complexity on the palate, which is always fresh, clean and characterful, with a hint of pepper on the finish,’ said Vinoteca’s Charlie Young, while team leader Jade Koch felt it was ‘oily, waxy and honeyed with citrus fruit, long, soft, bright and refreshing’. Harbour Heights Hotel’s Marek Rakowski suggested its ‘ripe tropical fruits and slightly smoky mineral palate would play well with lobster’, with team leader Annette Scarfe MW adding that this 'would be great with a range of Asian dishes - Thai dishes in particular'.

£25.79 Indigo Wine

Höpler, Blaufränkisch 2013, Burgenland, Austria

Gold medal winner

‘Fruit-driven, with blackberries on the nose,’ began Laure Patry of Jason Atherton Group of this well-priced Gold winner, continuing: ‘Some good structure on the palate with a touch of oak and cigar leaf, ripe and juicy with spices, representing good value,’ while Cristian Sanchez of Hotel du Vin Cambridge also noted ‘good intensity, ripe red cherry and plum with black pepper, violets, blackcurrant and an earthy tone’. ‘This wine has a simple drinkability,’ summarised Elly Owen of Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall, recommending it be served alongside charcuterie.

£10.22 Enotria&Coe

Anton Bauer, Ried Rosenberg, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Wagram, Austria

Silver medal winner

‘The nose is clean with a good mineral element, showing acidity in the mouth and an elegant finish,’ began Arnaud Fiol of The Don Restaurant, with Vinoteca’s Charlie Young finding a ‘stony, savoury nose, good ripeness to the fruit on the palate and a touch of residual sugar, balanced by flowing acidity’.

£13.55 Top Selection Ltd

Laurenz V, Friendly, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Niederösterreich, Austria

Silver medal winner

‘Intense and rich aromas of citrus, confit lemon, good intensity of pink peppercorns on the palate, which is dry with stony mineral notes,’ said team leader Andrea Briccarello, while Corin Ireland of Restaurant Sat Bains with Rooms enjoyed its ‘richer, fuller body with lots of vegetal and grassy character, fresh herbs and pea shoot notes with white pepper and bell pepper’.

£11.40 Bibendum

Johann Donabaum, Johann, Grüner Veltliner, Federspiel 2015, Wachau, Austria

Silver medal winner

A good food-matching choice, with its ‘stony mineral aromas, soft apple fruit on the palate with a slightly pithy, chewy mouthfeel and good white pepper character’, according to team leader Jade Koch, and Marek Rakowski of Harbour Heights Hotel felt it was ‘clean, long, mouthwatering and light’.

£13.21 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Willi Opitz, Weissburgunder NV, Burgenland, Austria

Silver medal winner

‘Deep colour, buttery and vanilla-driven aromas with quite prominent oaking, but peachy apricot fruits in the background,’ began Marek Rakowski of Harbour Heights Hotel, with team leader Jade Koch noting its ‘oily, waxy style, sweet, honeyed aromatic fruit and intensity, but it keeps hold of its balance’.

£11.66 Matthew Clark

Weixelbaum, Ried Rosengarten, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Kamptal, Austria

Silver medal winner

‘Tight lime and grapefruit notes on the nose,’ began team leader Andrea Briccarello, who found ‘good body, peppery with structure and vibrant acidity, exotic fruit notes on the finish’. ‘Well-balanced fruitiness and minerality, warming with a citric finish and a slight suggestion of sweetness,’ added Jacopo Mazzeo of The Pig Hotel (Brockenhurst).

£22.00 Kipferl Ltd.

Rudi Pichler, Grüner Veltliner, Federspiel 2015, Wachau, Austria

Silver medal winner

Jacopo Mazzeo of The Pig Hotel (Brockenhurst) found an ‘intense mineral nose, creamy texture with balanced acidity and clean citrus on the palate, medium in body and finish’, with Corin Ireland of Restaurant Sat Bains with Rooms also noting ‘good peppery spice notes to the finish, with fresh lemon and vegetal notes’.

£13.50 Berkmann Wine Cellars

Hirsch, Zöbing, Riesling 2015, Kamptal, Austria

Bronze medal winner

For team leader Annette Scarfe MW there was a ‘delicate spritz on the attack, lovely freshness with an appealing crisp, clean mid-palate’, and Tamas Nemeth of Bread Street Kitchen found it ‘dry, a little savoury in character, with lovely acidity’.

£12.88 Indigo Wine

Wieninger, Wiener, Riesling 2016, Vienna, Austria

Bronze medal winner

‘A wine to enjoy by the nose,’ began Simon Cassina of Winexponent, who enjoyed its ‘young, yeasty-creamy aromas on top of green apple and lime, spiced pear drop notes on a lively, refreshing palate, dry and crisp with tart lemon and salty mineral aftertaste’.

£11.04 Liberty Wines

Wieninger, Wiener Gemischter Satz, Nussberg 2015, Vienna, Austria

Bronze medal winner

‘Lemon-bright colour, citrus and spice aromas, good intensity with spice notes and complexity on the palate, melon and mineral hints, very long and impressive,’ said Vinoteca’s Charlie Young, while team leader Jade Koch suggested its ‘meaty, full-bodied, savoury green style needs some sweet shellfish or crab’.

£18.89 Liberty Wines

Mantlerhof, Weitgasse, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Kremstal, Austria

Commended medal winner

£10.18 Bibendum

Rabl, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Kamptal, Austria

Commended medal winner

Soellner, Wogenrain, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Wagram, Austria

Commended medal winner

£10.53 Matthew Clark

Soellner, Fumberg, Grüner Veltliner 2015, Wagram, Austria

Commended medal winner

£15.14 Matthew Clark

Erich Machherndl, Kollmutz, Grüner Veltliner, Federspiel 2015, Wachau, Austria

Commended medal winner

£9.92 Enotria&Coe

Kracher, Blend 2 2013, Burgenland, Austria

Commended medal winner

Wohlmuth, Kitzecker, Sauvignon Blanc 2015, Styria, Austria

Commended medal winner

£10.17 Ester Wines


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