TN: 2000 Franz Hirtzberger Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Honivogl

Nice framing acidity - quite deelish! Lengthy finish as well, with a slight astringent note at the very end. I like this.

Posted from CellarTracker

You know, while I drink my fair share of Austrian wine (and compared to fellow WB members, much more than my fair share), I have to admit that I focus the vast majority of my attention on riesling.

The way this wine is drinking today could make me call into question why I have “ignored” gruner veltliner in my past purchasing decisions, as this is one nice wine right now.

I’m in kind of the same boat. Went through a Gruner phase a few years back, then decided that Riesling was more to my preferences. Notes like this make me question that choice, but the fact that I have zero locker space might keep me from reversing that decision :wink:
Thanks for the note!

Ever since our visit to the Wachau we have been buying gruners, giving them 3-5 years and REALLY enjoying them.

Riesling is good too.

Riesling from Austria just hits my “sweet spot” - I find many of the German wines too sweet, and while I like certain Alsatian wines, for whatever reason quality Austrian producers like Prager, Hirtzberger, Nikolaihof and Alzinger just seem to speak to me a little more directly.

That said, I have generally liked Hirtzberger’s Rotes Tor GV bottling, but other than that, can’t say as I have sought out many GV’s.

love Austrian rieslings and don’t care for the peppery Grüners.

While I love Wachau Rieslings, I think their Gruners age better. They gain more depth and richness.

Lately, I have become a whore for Smaragd Austrian Rieslings and Gruners (Prager, Alzinger, R Pichler, Hirtzberger). They taste wonderful young, but what do you generally think the optimum age is for each? I see Steve likes to give the Gruners 3 to 5 years, but I also hear others loving them with 10 or 20 plus years on them. Thoughts?

With most Austrian Rieslings and Grüner Veltliners,3-5 years sort of gets them onto a plateau where they’re showing what they’re about. From a good vintage, 10+ years will bring out more character in terms of showing the specific terroir. Smaragds are indeed wonderful after a long time in the cellar, but I prefer Federspiel wines on the young side. (and don’t forget the Sauvignon Blancs being made in Steiermark - they’re impressive and can hold their own alongside wine made from the same variety in the Loire or New Zealand).


Still have a few bottles of the '99 in the cellar - lovely wine.
I remember Terry Thiese saying gurner was one of the most long lived white wines. I suspect the '99 Honivogl has the capacity to outlive me; I would, however, be surprised if I let it.
Best, Jim

I bet that opening one of those would make for a very special occasion, circa 2019-2029.

2019, maybe. But 2029; I doubt I will let them go that long - I may not.
Best, Jim

Yeah, this hobby starts to suck when the actuarial realities of life itself begin rearing their ugly heads.

Since we are on the topic of Austrian Gruners aging, what do people think something like the Nigl Privat Gruner from '06 would have for a drinking curve? Some store by me is blowing these out at $20 a pop and it is a monster wine at almost 15% given the warm vintage.