Olaszrizling 2016 — Welschriesling
A Wine That
reminds us of ‘Austrian Aligoté’ — clean and structured like some of its Francophile friends over the other side of the Alps. Olaszrizling is in fact the old name of Welschriesling - one of Austria’s most widely planted white varieties behind Grüner. What Christoph is bottling year after year is nothing short of the best expression of this grape in Burgenland today. This wine will make you wonder why you don’t drink Welschriesling more often, while salty, animating drops trickle down your throat, making you impatiently beckon for a refill.
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- Delivery: Delivery and gift wrapping options available at checkout.
- Winemaker: Christoph Wachter-Wiesler
Where and How?
Welschriesling (Olaszrizling in Hungarian) is taken from vines of between 30 and 50 years of age, located on steep terrain rich in green schist in the town of Eisenberg. The berries are then foot stomped together with the stems, before being direct-pressed slowly, so that some of the goodness from the stems and skins makes its way into the final juice. This is then aged in large, used oak barrels, which really lets the juice itself shine, rather than any new oak flavours.
The Wachter-Wiesler wines saw a radical change in style when Christoph took the winemaking reins from his parents, but instead of becoming more radically affected by the winemaking, the opposite occurred; the wines became more subtle and dialled-in to their source—the vineyards. The hand of the human stepped back and instead the voice of the fruit itself became louder.
Today, the Blaufränkisch wines they produce are amongst the most nuanced versions found in Austria; they compete with the famed ability of Pinot Noir to express their site. As for the 15% white grapes that they work with—this cellar has become home to some of the most thrilling examples of Welschriesling since they flipped their way of thinking.
Most importantly of all, the domaine has led by example with regards to healthy viticulture. The soils thrive and the cover crop & wildflowers bloom throughout the year, providing homes and food for a swathe of beneficial insects. The change has been so positive than Christoph hasn’t noticed herbicide use by other growers in the area for two years; a giant step in the world of Sudburgenland’s vineyards.