THE ADVOCATE 219
VOL. 79 PART 2 MARCH 2021
with a hint of honey. Food pairings could include, as the winery suggests,
raw shucked oysters or a soft local goat cheese. Other ideas include fish
tacos or a sole meunière. It is available at Save-On-Foods, BC VQA and other
private wine stores, or online or in person from the winery.
Grüner Veltliner is a dry white wine that until recently grew almost exclusively
in Austria, where it is the most widely planted white grape variety.
The name translates to “green wine of Veltlin”. Veltlin was an area in the
lower Alps during the 1600s that is now part of Valtellina, Italy.4 In 2007,
DNA analysis confirmed that Grüner Veltliner was a natural crossing of Savagnin
(Traminer) and an obscure Austrian grapevine named St. Georgener-
Rebe.5 There are about 50,000 acres of Grüner Veltliner worldwide, and over
seventy-five per cent are in Austria.6 The other twenty-five per cent are
mostly in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, the Adelaide Hills in Australia,
the north island of New Zealand, the northeastern United States, and
Grüner comes in three general styles. They are as a sparkling wine, as a
fresh steely and acidic young wine (that is food-friendly but not so much for
sipping) and as a complex aged version sometimes compared with white
Burgundy. According to wine expert Oz Clarke, Grüner Veltliner is usually
not very aromatic in its youth, developing more tertiary aromas with age.8
Instead, the grape often shows tart citrus, mineral, white pepper, lentil and
celery notes, with more full-bodied and aged examples having what Clarke
describes as a “honeyed weight” to them.9 These aged versions show rich
textured layers of lemon, honey, nuts and a faint creaminess. Winemakers
use their best fruit for this style and often label these wines “reserve”.
WINEMAKER’S CUT GRÜNER VELTLINER 2019
BC VQA Okanagan Valley #88461 $25.00 (approx.)
This Oliver-Osoyoos area winery is operated by a couple from Slovakia.
They use fully organic and some biodynamic farming methods (including
working from a lunar calendar and playing classical music to the vines to
ward off insects and advance maturity!). This wine is from a wild yeast ferment,
with ten per cent aged in Slovenian oak and the rest in stainless steel.
It is more in the vein of a reserve style. On the nose are light aromas of lime,
grapefruit and some green apple plus white flowers, pepper and cut grass.
The flavours are light lemon-lime and white grapefruit, green peach, with
notes of minerals and raw almonds and a medium finish. Rated at 92 points
on <www.winescores.ca>, it is available at Save-On-Foods, BC VQA and