Blaufrankisch tasting

Hi folks,

Just thought I’d post a summary of the blaufrankisch tasting that James Wright posted about a while back. James, thanks again for opening up the offer to the board.

The full notes are quite lengthy so what follows is an excerpt from the latest post on my blog. For the full notes and some side commentary on Eric Asimov’s take on the wines, please go to my site.

A few weeks ago, I was fortunate enough to attend a tasting of about 35 Austrian wines, most of them made from the red grape known in Austria as blaufrankisch (and known in other places as lemberger, among other names). This was my first extensive look at blaufrankisch, and I came away both impressed by the high level of quality in the wines, and the wide range of styles represented. At one end of the spectrum, the wines presented by Moric reminded me very much of red burgundies – showing earthiness and funk, and reddish fruits, if not quite the lightness of pinot noir, owing to the somewhat denser feel of blaufrankisch. At the other end of the spectrum, producers like Prieler, Uwe Schiefer and Umathum showed very dark-fruited, tannic and structured wines that would please fans of brawny wines like big California cabs. The versatility of blaufrankisch impressed me given the high level of quality displayed throughout this spectrum.

There was also a smattering of white wines, including a promising chard (or chard blend) from Paul Achs that had some 1er cru burg-like potential, a nice pinot blanc from Prieler, and an interesting minerally traminer from Umathum.

Overall, I’d recommend the wines to anyone looking to try something a little different but of high quality and accessible to fans of more well-known varieties - pinot and gamay fans may want to try the Moric wines; cab and malbec lovers might prefer to gravitate toward the Prieler, Schiefer end of things.

Alan, thanks for the details - I printed them out, and I’ll take a read later.

My pleasure, Bob - I welcome your feedback, questions and especially your notes from tasting blaufrankisch if you have some to share. Thanks for reading!