He is regarded as "Mr New Zealand Wine" within New Zealand and around the globe. Although, Thermenregion is mainly a white wine producing sub-region focusing on indigenous Rotgipfler and Zierfandler it is also famous for the red Burgundy style wines and this is where excellent Pinot Noir and Sankt Laurent  (St. Laurent) wines come from. In fact, wine has been part of the culture in the Austrian region for over 4000 years but this amazing history has been obscured by the "antifreeze scandal" of 1985, when it was revealed that some wine brokers were adulterating their wines by adding the harmful substance diethylene glycol to their product. This meant that the wines would be less sweet and more acidic than desired and this led some unscrupulius wine producers to modify the wines. Both Blaufränkisch are mind-blowing: Blaufränkisch David's Show Reserve 2012 €20.9, Blaufränkisch Reserve Dürrau 2012 €24.2. Visionary winemakers, a raging natural-wine debate and revelations on a scandal aren't what I was expecting when I joined buyer Freddy Bulmer on his first buying trip to Austria earlier this year; but I was completely blown away by the passion, innovation and incredible wines I … The scandal had a long-term impact on the Austrian wine industry, with exports returning to their pre-1985 levels only in 2001. Austrian Wine Scandal Item Preview podcast_witness-history-witness-archi_austrian-wine-scandal_1000401601931_itemimage.png . All four Pinot Noirs are named after particular vineyard the grapes are harvested from. It was in fact not ‘anti-freeze’, the substance used as antifreeze in cars is ethylene glycol not diethylene glycol. There were no wine growers involved or sentenced but criminal wine merchants who altered cheap wine to ‘Spätlese/Auslese’ style wines and shipped it in tank to Germany where it was bottled and sold. The Pinot Noir Hochreit 2013 and Pinor Noir Breitenteil 2013 (both €31 Euros each), Pinot Noir Setzluss and Haide at the same price. The growth in the premium segment has been driven by Austrian wines, which have gained in quality over the years, following the diethylene glycol wine scandal in 1985 (see Box 1). The 1985 austrian wine diethylene glycol scandal. Still, if you do not live in Austria, Germany or Switzerland (or do not have friends  who live there ),  it is quite unlikely that you have come across Austrian wine since only a fraction of it is currently being exported (with more than 90% into other EU states). Tagged: A guide to Austrian Wine, Burgenland, Steiermark, Wien, Niederosterreich, The 1985 austrian wine diethylene glycol scandal, Familie Johanneshof Reinisch, Thermenregion - Merlot Dornfeld, Pinot Noir, Pinot Noir Grillenhügel, Pinot Noir Holzspur, Premiere (a red young wine cuvée), Riesling , Rotgipfler, Rotgipfler Satzing, Rotgipfler Auslese, Sauvignon Blanc, St. Laurent, St. Laurent Frauenfeld, St. Laurent Holzspur, Sparkling Pinot Noir Brut, Steingarten (a red wine cuvée), Zierfandler Spiegel, Zweigelt, Zweigelt Frauenfeld, Schneider winery, Tattendorf - Excellent St.Laurent, Pinot Noir, Weingut Familie Auer, Tattendorf - Excellent Reserve St.Laurent, Pinot Noir. One of the favourites amongst non-Burgundermachers (along with Juris - another Stiegelmar). This is very old grape variety is a great source for zesty sparkling Roséwein. This is one of the best winemakers in Thermenregion and his Merlot Classic 2013 (Price €9.60!) The practice was uncovered by German wine analysis labs who performed quality tests on wines sold in Germany. He also has a very nice BF DAC Leithaberg 2013, which is a smaller brother of Jungenberg and quite enjoyable been now and costs €15. He estimates tasting over 100,000 wines since he began to formally record tasting notes. But it took the Austrian wine industry many years to recover (2001 wine exports recovered to pre-1985 levels) and it still has an impact on the reputation of the country's production despite it happening over 20 years ago. Grüner Veltliner accounts for approximately half of the white grape variety volume but other important varieties to mention are: Welschriesling, Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc), Riesling, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Gelber Muskateller, Grauburgunder (Pinot Gris) and indigenous grape varieties like Rotgipfler and Zierfandler. Very good St. Laurent and Pinot Noir year after year and the price/quality is top notch. The Cabernet Sauvignon Kalbskopf 2013 €18.1, Stiegelmar 2012 (€19.4, ZW+BF+CS) and Zweigelt Ungerberg 2012 €34 are excellent. All wines are excellent although still young and will benefit from ageing of at least 1 year in a cellar. Find out everything you wanted to know about the key wine producing areas of the world with their recommended wines. When you sip a glass of Austrian wine don’t say “Prost,” say “Frost.” Witness History. It worked. The wine scandal has been the subject of many satirical references to Austrian wine, both inside Austria, in Germany and beyond, and lasting long after 1985. Other white grape varieties like Welshriesling,  Chardonnay (called here Morillon). Late ripening white wine varietals with good acidity  and high susceptibility to Botrytis are ideally suited to the production of Ruster Ausbruch, including  Welschriesling, white pinot, Furmint and Yellow Muscat. Rotweingut Maria Kerschbaum (http://www.weingut-kerschbaum.at/htm/home/start.php) from Horitschon, Mittelburgenland - the Blaufränkischland. Right now the Austrian wine industry is doing the best it's ever done and making some of the best white wines in the world. Unfortunately, diethylene glycol, an ingredient in antifreeze, is poisonous. There are several reasons  for this: history, climate, terroir and one of the strictest and newest wine regulatory regimes in the world following the 1985 diethylene glycol scandal when several Austrian wineries were found to be adulterating wine with this toxic substance. Although the scandal was a terrible thing to happen to the country of Austria and the livelihood of many honest people in the Austrian wine industry, it was probably the best thing to ever happen to Austrian wine itself. After a 1985 "glucose" scandal that saw unscrupulous winemakers using anti-freeze on their grapes, Austrian winemaking has returned to its organic origins, producing some of the best wines in Europe. Interesting fact: “Approximately 62% of Austria is covered by the Austrian Alps. The Grande Cuvee 2013 (€12.5, cuvee of Zweigelt and Rathay), Cabernet Sauvignon "100 days" 2013 €16 and his flagman Massiv 2012 (€32, cuvee of BF, Rathay, ZW and CS. Much stricter wine laws were also enacted by Austria on August 29, 1985 which is now one of the strictest standards in the world and since then a term “Qualitätswein” or “Quality wine” is applied to all wines produced in Austria. !NOBODY died and nobody was physically harmed by the substance. Austrian wine exports practically collapsed overnight and its reputation as a winemaking nation was torn to shreds. The practice was uncovered by German wine analysis labs who performed quality tests on wines sold in Germany. First place in the tasting was awarded to a 1990 Grüner Veltliner "Vinothekfüllung" Smaragd, Knoll (Wachau, Austria) with an average rating of 18.09 points, followed by a 1997 Grüner Veltliner "Ried Lamm", Bründlmayer (Kamptal, Austria) with 17.78 points. We've got it all! Burgenland is a home of full-bodied red wines thanks to long and hot Pannonian summers. VIENNA, Austria -- Four wine makers have been arrested for allegedly using a lethal antifreeze solution to sweeten their wine in a scheme that has threatened the future of Austria's wine … Eventually, someone died, a scandal was born, and Austrian wine sales tanked. (i) Wine: the wine scandal of 1985 changed Austrian wine-making, and the quality of the end-product, dramatically. Recent reports indicate that Italian authorities have seized over 160,000 liters (roughly 220,000 bottles) of counterfeit Rosso and Brunello di Montalcino worth approximately $1.3 million. At Virgin Wines we have a vast range of Red Wines, White Wines, Rose, Champagne and Prosecco from all over the winemaking world. Wines that have passed through a panel of blind tasting can bear the label, "Cercle Ruster Ausbruch", with the Ruster wine Charta signed in December 2005 by leading producers in the area. Yet with a range of world-class red and white wines, a viticulture shaped by war and scandal, as well as a capital city with more vineyards than any other, we went to unearth this Alpine nation’s secret wine culture. Your email address will not be published. Weingut Juris (http://www.juris.at/en/weingut/) from Gols, chief winemaker (Axel Stiegelmar) has consistently good wines year after year. In honor of what sources are calling “one of the biggest wine frauds ever,” Grape Collective takes a look back at the top five wine scandals of the past three decades. Industry and government have launched campaign to regain lost markets abroad. Corks finally pop for Austrian wine 29 years after antifreeze scandal with Waitrose selling 53 per cent more than last year. However, this thriving industry was nearly brought to its knees in the 1980s when a scandal broke. The short-term effect of the scandal was a complete collapse of Austrian wine exports and a huge dent in the reputation of the Austrian wine industry as well as in Germany similar in scale to the VW diesel engine emissions scandal uncovered in 2015.  it took the Austrian wine industry over a decade to recover. Weingut Kerniger (http://www.keringer.at/Deutsch/Frame%20Weingut.htm) from Mönchhof. “Qualitätswein” is produced from the grapes grown in three federal states of Austria: Niederösterreich, Burgenland and Steiermark and they are defined as wine growing regions. Zweigelt is a key grape variety in this region. One of the convicted Wagram winemakers, Karl Grill, proprietor of Firma Gebrüder Grill, committed suicide after being sentenced to a prison sentence. Another Burgundermacher. Südsteiermark with its’ rolling hills and fine weather is reminiscent of Tuscany, however the focus here is on aromatic grape varieties like Sauvignon Blanc and Gelber Muskateller. this wine has won multiple awards). Grüner Veltliner has been recognised to be a white grape capable of producing wines with a great richness, complexity and ageing potential equalled only by by top class Chardonnay and Riesling wines. Leopold Aumann (https://www.aumann.at/de) from Tribuswinkel. All rights reserved. Renommee (€14, ZW+CS), HST 2013 (€13, ZW+BF) and CS M1 2013 €22. In addition to the wine growing industry this is the Spa and hot springs paradise. Austrian consumers are increasingly interested in premium wines and are willing to pay more for them. Pinot Noir, Thermenregion vineyard, Austria. blank blank. The Top 5 Wine Scandals . Rust was granted the status of Freistadt (free city) by Emperor Leopold I in 1681, partly because of his wife's love of the local sweet wines. In those days, a good bottle of Austrian red wine was a miracle. 2013 vintage is not yet released, but 2012 available and he has a nice wooden box with those 4 different wines (http://shop.juris.at/de/weine/pinot-noir-lagen/pinot-noir-2012-lagen-holzkiste.html), The Pinot Noir Breitenteil 2012 was ranked third in Austria last year in the grape category and Ina'mera 2012 also third in the Cuvee category. Archeologists have confirmed that people had been planting grapes in Austria since before the Roman Empire and with its arrival the wine growing became even more organised. Some journalist had the idea to choose the catchy term anti-freeze. Bob Campbell MW was the second wine writer in the world (after Jancis Robinson) to become a Master of Wine. At the 2015 event there were 121 winemakers invited to attend the event with 350 wines. Other varieties important to Austrian wine include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Welschriesling and Pinot Blanc (known here by its German name Weissburgunder).Austria's red wines are made primarily from Blaufrankisch, Zweigelt, Saint-Laurent and Pinot Noir (Blauburgunder).. At the time Germany was the most important export market for Austrian wine with the wines of a similar style to those produced by Germany itself, notably semi-sweet and sweet white wines, but sold at a lower price. The Neusiedlersee is a large shallow lake separating Austria from Hungary and benefits from outbreaks of noble rot, an essential component for the production of complex sweet wines. was excellent. The scandal involved several Austrian wineries which illegally adulterated their wines to make them appear sweeter and more full-bodied in the style of late harvest wines. The Cabernet was kept for 36 months in new barrique and Blaufränkisch in a mix of new and old. Officially there are 35 grape varieties which can be grown in Austria: 22 white wine  varieties and 13 red wine varieties. Franz Netzl and daughter Christina, run one of the most prestigious wineries in Carnuntum Weibauregion and their Cuvée Anna-Christina 2013. Austrian wines are not big sellers in Florida but the diethylene glycol scandal that has rocked the European wine industry has begun to create waves of anxiety among Florida wine … Cabernet Sauvignon Alter Satz 2012 (€39) and Blaufränkisch v36 2012 (€34) were both excellent. My recent article about the Austrian wine scandal, Accolade to sell Petaluma and Krondorf wineries, Australia wins big at Decanter World Wine Awards 2020, https://www.therealreview.com/2019/01/09/austrian-wine-scandal-setting-the-record-straight. Carnuntum, which is situated next to Burgenland and Pannonian plains, enjoys a lot of sunshine hence the focus here is on the red wines predominantly made of Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch. Austrian health officials on Thursday also said that their investigation of adulterated wines had uncovered a production of fake wines. Austria was, rather surprisingly, the third largest producer of wine globally in the 1920s, mainly producing and exporting simple light white wines. At the same time Blaufränkisch, St.Laurent, Blauer Burgunder (Pinot Noir), Blauburger and Blauer Portugieser are also important to mention. The estimate was that the lethal dose of a ‘glycol wine’ was about 25-30 litres at a time….. Some of my personal favourites from Austria: The Falstaff Rotweingala in Hofburg is focused on the top wine producers and each of them sends 3 of his top red wines, which are then assessed by Falstaff committee in advance and then selected for the wine tasting. An embarrassing wine scandal in 1985 almost did in Austria's wine reputation, oddly caused by a few insiders attempting to aid some of the country's lower caliber wines by adding unauthorized agents to the wines. Nevertheless, in terms of quality and value Austrian wine is notable versus its more famous competitors in Europe such as Burgundy and Italy. Westeiermark is a Schilcher (Blauer Wildbacher) region. Many of the adulterated wines were found to originate in Wagram in Lower Austria, where a consulting wine chemist was prosecuted. Weingut Dopler (http://www.tattendorf.at/dopler/) from Tattendorf. Australian wines sales also suffered because people confused it with Austria. Stiegelmar (http://www.stiegelmar.com/en) from Gols. The scandal involved several Austrian wineries which illegally adulterated their wines to make them appear sweeter and more full-bodied in the style of late harvest wines. In the months that followed the discovery of the adulteration, several wine makers and dealers were arrested by the Austrian police and the first prison sentence, of one and a half years, followed in October 1985. Austria produces only a fifth as much wine as Australia – … dry, etc), as well as the official Federal Inspection Number and name of the producer or bottler.. #Antifreeze #Austrianwine #Austrianwinescandal So the image of ‘two Austrian wine growers one on the southern and one on the northern side etc…’ is wrong and misleading. His SL Reserve 2012 (€17) was a winner last year in the St. Laurent category and it is still available for sale. This winemaker has always been consistently good, but in the last few years he has started to pick up the trophies - one after another. Austrian wine If you're after versatile wines to match many popular recipes – Rieslings for Indian curries and roast duck or chicken, Grüner Veltliner for Thai, Chinese and Vietnamese dishes, and lighter-style reds like St Laurent which is similar to Pinot Noir, then take a look at Cellar's collection from all over this diverse winemaking country. Among the top winemakers were the wineries Netzl, Kollwentz, Gernot and Heike Heinrich, Preisinger, Scheiblhofer, Werner Achs, Umathum. Grüner Veltliner is the quintessential wine of Austria, but there’s more to discover. Austrian wine scandal – setting the record straight. All three categories of wines tasted were won by Austrian wines. Austrian Wine Scandal. Rust is a key city in this area as it is famous for its Ruster Ausbruch, a sweet, concentrated wine produced from grapes affected by noble rot (Botrytis cinerea) as a result of the areas climatic conditions. If the wine is from Austria, the label must say so. I remember my first visit to a Heuriger, the day I arrived in Vienna in September 1984, and the morning after. Some Austrian exporters had entered into long-term contracts with supermarket chains to supply large quantities of wine at a specified quality and in poor vintages much of the grape harvest did not reach sufficient ripeness levels. ... Labels will have to indicate the wine's exact origin, quality and content. Wine production of Austria is mainly about white and sweet wines, however in the country are also produced red wines. 28,000 litres of Ruster Ausbruch as well as gold had to be handed over to acquire the status. All 3 wines have excellent price/quality ratio. Second place went to Kreutzer and winemaker Albert Gesellmann with his Bela Rex 2013 Cuvée. On July 9th 1985, the Federal Ministry of Health in Bonn issued an official health warning against the consumption of Austrian wines, and the news quickly spread around the world. In Austria, winemaking is credited to the Celts — dating back to the 8th century BC — as is evidenced by numerous excavations along the Amber Road, an early trade route between the Baltic and Mediterranean Seas. In 1985 the huge scandal with the illegal additive diethylene glycol (a primary ingredient in anti freeze) made the Austrian wine making industry instantly infamous, however in a long run it served a very good purpose. Weingut Johann Gisperg (http://www.weingut-gisperg.at) from Teesdorf . Shortly after the scandal, the Styrian bard Volker Schöbitz composed a polka under the rhyming title Zum Wohl, Glykol - "Cheers, glycol". [7] I suppose that Gallo’s Red Bicyclette was sort of a scandal for the region/US. The Pinot Noir Reserve (€16.5) and St. Laurent Reserve are highly recommended as Johnann is one of the best Burgundermachers in Austria. Cover vegetation balances the relatively high temperatures  of the Pannonian climate, whilst well ventilated leaf canopies and autumn fogs from the Neusiedlersee ensure that the grapes dry quickly after rainfall which means ideal conditions for the development of noble rot. The Austrian wine-tainting scandal a year ago has reduced the nation's wine exports to a trickle this year. We have chosen a few of these for you to browse through in our online wine shop. The market for Austrian wine, especially the semi-sweet styles then in favour, evaporated overnight. Get to know more about Austrian wine by seeing the country’s layout and learning about its 3 top grape varieties. The first wine discovered to contain DEG was a 1983 Rüster Auslese from a supermarket in Stuttgart, analysed on June 27, 1985 and a 1981 Welschriesling Beerenauslese from Burgenland was found to contain 48 grams per litre of diethylene glycol meaning that one bottle could have been lethal or irreversibly damage the kidney, liver and brain. Vienna with its 612 hectares is a standalone region with its flagship Gemischter Satz, a new trendy wine produced from a variety of grapes, which are grown, harvested and fermented together. I suppose that Gallo’s Red Bicyclette was sort of a scandal for the region/US. My recent article about the Austrian wine scandal attracted a response from a friend of mine who runs a wine school in Austria. Zweigelt is the most well known Austrian red grape variety and it accounts for almost 50% of the total red wine production. A must weight of at least 30 degrees KMW at harvest is required for Ruster Ausbruch and the finished wine has a optimal alcohol content of 12%. HST - Hannes Steurer (http://www.hannessteurer.at/sortiment) from Jois. Weingut Amsee (http://www.wein-amsee.at) from Gols.