From: Langenlois, Kamptal, Austria
Blend: Grüner Vetltliner
Taste: A bouquet of elderflower and chamomile opens to showcase ripe white fruits and a hint of white pepper that blend seamlessly with cool mineral notes, echoing the cool climate of its origin. The wine's lively floral, citrus and cool-fruited acidity perfectly balances fine black tea tannins, creating a dynamic and structured taste experience. The overall impression is one of balance and refinement with a lingering, dry finish and golden color.
Pairing: Austrian Grüner Veltliner, with its crisp and refreshing profile, shines brightly when paired with various foods, enhancing the culinary experience. Its subtle fruitiness and characteristic peppery note make it a versatile companion to dishes ranging from light seafood to richer poultry. Imagine the delicate flavors of sushi or a zesty shrimp cocktail gently complemented by the wine's vibrant acidity. Additionally, its herbaceous undertones match fresh salads dressed in vinaigrette or creamy vegetable-based soups. For meat lovers, the wine's elegance and zesty character pairs wonderfully with roasted chicken or turkey, where it cuts through the richness without overpowering the dish.
Crispy Shrimp Cakes With Chile-Lime Mayo
By Melissa Clark
More About This Wine: The 2021 Belle Naturelle from Weingut Jurtschitsch is more than just a wine; it celebrates nature in its purest form. Dubbed "a wine in Adam and Eve costume," it eschews the conventional trappings of wine production. Unfined and unfiltered, this Grüner Veltliner requires a gentle turn before opening, a nod to its natural, unadulterated character.
The journey of this wine begins in the high-altitude vineyards around Langenlois, where Grüner Veltliner grapes are meticulously hand-harvested. The winemaking process embraces a back-to-basics approach: spontaneous fermentation on the skins for about two weeks in neutral Austrian oak vats without temperature control. This natural process, including spontaneous malolactic fermentation, occurs in Jurtschitsch's 700-year-old cellar, where the wine matures on lees in neutral oak barrels. The result is a complex, diverse flavor profile that is as unique as natural.
Under the banner "Entdeckungen vom Weingut / Discoveries from the Winery," the Jurtschitsch Winery has produced special project wines since 2007. These limited-edition wines embody the spirit of exploration and diversity. Each vintage begins as a concept, pursuing varied flavor expressions in wine. The 2022 Belle Naturelle is a prime example of this philosophy, born from embracing the vineyard's terroir in its truest form.
At Jurtschitsch, the belief is that each generation of winemakers must reinterpret their terroir. This philosophy is evident in the "Entdeckungen vom Weingut / Discoveries from the Winery,", a product of sensitive experimentation in both the vineyard and the cellar. The ever-changing climate and the winemakers' innovative approaches lead to wines that surprise and delight, offering a new understanding of the terroir's varied expressions.
For this vintage: The late arrival of spring, accompanied by a severe drought, set a dramatic stage. However, May's much-needed rainfall quenched the thirsty vines, marking a turning point for the vineyards. The flowering period was a dance of sun and rain, demanding exceptional care and attention from the vineyard team.
In the Kamptal area, a mix of warm and muggy weather conditions led to a natural reduction in yield. This, coupled with the phenomenon of coulure, resulted in loosely bunched grapes. Far from being a setback, this unusual development proved beneficial during the harvest, enhancing the quality of the fruit.
The summer brought a blend of warmth, rain, and dramatic thunderstorms, enriching the grapes with complex flavors. By September, the vineyards were ready for harvest. Handpicked with care, the grapes were a vibrant display of health and rich aromas, promising an exceptional wine.
In the cellar, these carefully selected grapes transformed. The ten-day maceration on skins imparted depth and complexity, while the natural cloudiness of the wine hinted at its unfiltered purity.
About: The production process of this Grüner Veltliner is meticulous. The grapes are hand-harvested with selective precision and transported in stackable boxes to ensure they remain undamaged. The grapes are then destemmed and undergo a gentle pressing after a few hours of maceration. The fermentation process is conducted in stainless steel tanks housed within a historic 700-year-old natural cellar, a setting that adds a touch of tradition to modern winemaking techniques. This wine is then allowed to mature on its fine lees for a period, enhancing its complexity and depth of flavor.
Located in Langenlois, Weingut Jurtschitsch is one of Austria's most prestigious wineries, showcasing the best Austrian wine culture. Under the stewardship of Alwin and Stefanie Jurtschitsch, the winery has redefined premium wine with a focus on authenticity, complexity, and terroir-specific attributes. Their philosophy centers on producing cool, elegant wines that allow the unique characteristics of Langenlois appellations to shine.
Their approach to winemaking is grounded in traditions yet innovative. They practice biological farming, ensuring healthy soils, minimal interventions in the cellar, and a commitment to continuous experimentation. This dedication to organic farming was a conscious decision made after Alwin and Stefanie's extensive travels in the wine world, recognizing the integral role of sustainable practices in quality winemaking. They use natural fertilizers like cow dung and diversify their vineyards with peach trees and vineyard garlic to create self-sustaining, healthy vines that produce intense wines.
In the cellar, their philosophy is of minimal intervention. The wines undergo spontaneous fermentation and are only moderately sulphurized before bottling. This careful, respectful approach to nature and vinification, combined with an openness to new methods, has been their formula for creating wines of the highest standard.
The Kamp Valley, or Kamptal, where the winery is located, is renowned for its peppery Grüner Veltliners DAC and elegantly fruity Rieslings DAC. Langenlois, the valley's central town, is Austria's largest wine-producing town, characterized by a diverse terrain of primary rock, clay, and loess. The Kamptal Wine Road, named after the Kamp River, highlights the region's wine culture and tourism, enhanced by numerous heuriger wine taverns and shops. The Kamptal DAC designation signifies wines made from Grüner Veltliner or Riesling grapes, available in medium-weight classic styles or as powerful dry reserves.
The geological diversity of the Kamp Valley, with its loess, gravel, crystalline intrusions, and red sandstone, contributes to the unique characteristics of its wines. This variety in soil and rock types is a testament to the area's dynamic geological past, including ancient seas, volcanoes, and river shifts. The climate in Kamptal is marked by a dynamic tension between the hot Pannonian basin to the east and the cooler Waldviertel to the northwest. This results in wines with great aromatic finesse and vibrant acidity, benefiting from the contrast between hot days and cooler nights.
An exemplary representation of Kamptal wine, this vintage embodies the essence of this Austrian wine region. It is a down-to-earth yet precisely crafted wine, mirroring the distinct Kamptal characteristics of spiciness, freshness, and minerality. The vines from which this wine originates are deeply rooted in small, high-altitude vineyards, thriving in primary rock soils rich in gneiss and mica schist. This high elevation and the vineyards' proximity to the forest edge introduces a cooler climate with significant temperature variations between day and night, contributing to the wine's unique profile.
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