Tag Archives: Austria

A&H Nittnaus, Kalk und Schiefer, Zweigelt, 2012

Since my trip to Vienna, I wasn’t able to find this producer and was pretty bummed, especially since Austrian wines are all the rage but the selection isn’t that diverse. It seems like the same 4 producers are carried everywhere. At Cafe Sabarsky,  I saw they carried half bottles and I went for it. It was almost exactly the same scenario as in Vienna: drink Nittnaus then go upstairs to see an installation of Egon Schiele. Intense, and brilliant. You might see a previous post referring to the Blaufrankisch I had that time, and I think I still prefer it to the Zweigelt, but this was still one of the best I’ve had of its kind. Vigorous, compact fruit, clove-y and very persistent.

Gölles Marille Apricot Brandy, Riegersburg


Who: Schnapsbrennerei Alois Gölles

Where: Styria, Riegersburg (Austria)

Fully ripe apricots are hand-picked, cleaned, stoned, then mashed and fermented at a controlled temperature. Stones are added to the mash during fermentation to increase the particularity in its taste. The mash is then transferred to copper kettles and distilled in a traditional manner, two times over. The second distillation is what distinguishes it from others, as it enhances the “tertiary” flavors and subdues the heat from the high level of alcohol.

I first tried this when I was in Vienna, and it peaked my interest in brandy. I didn’t really care for it before, but thought I should try something typical of Austria while in town and it was the best decision I made. It turns out Austria does apricots very well (preserves, candies, brandy) and this was no exception. Incredibly balanced, delicate, aromatic and ripe, it’s perfect as a digestif or cold comfort during the long winter.



traminer eiswein, weingut schwarz, schrattenberg, austria


Literally translated, Gewurztraminer means ‘spiced Traminer’ (Traminer Aromatico in Italian), in reference to the grape’s heritage as a mutation of the Traminer family of grapes. Up until 1870 Gewurztraminer was simply known as Traminer in Alsace, and even until the 1970s both Traminer and Gewurztraminer were used to describe the same grapes.