Robert Bell's

Wines of Canada

Since 1992

Grüner Veltliner  

Grüner Veltliner

Grüner Veltliner ( German pronunciation: ['g?y?n? v?it'll?n?] ) of white wine grape variety grown primarily in Austria , Slovakia , and the Czech Republic . It has a reputation of being a particularly food-friendly wine . It is made into wines of many different styles

Grüner Veltliner has been believed to date back to Roman times, with its name being derived from Veltlin (Valtellina) in northern Italy, though ampelographers and wine historians have yet to find a link between the grape and the Italian commune. The grape is likely indigenous to Austria. The current name appeared in a document for the first time in 1855; before that time it was known as Weißgipfler. Only by the 1930s was Grüner Veltliner established as the standard name of the grape. Until the Second World War, it was regarded as just another Austrian grape, but after the introduction of Lenz Moser's Hochkultur system of vine training, it expanded quickly in plantation from the 1950s to later become Austria's most planted variety.

In recent years, Grüner Veltliner has seen an uptick in interest following the results of a 2002 wine tasting organized by Masters of Wine Jancis Robinson and Tim Atkin. Here Grüner Veltliner from Austria beat out several highly acclaimed white Grand cru wines from Burgundy.

Grüner Veltliner grape is versatile and can produce a wide array of wines, from light and quaffable to rich and concentrated. The best dry Grüner Veltliners are perfumed, bone dry and full bodied, with high acidity and distinctive notes of spice and white pepper. It tends to offer citrus fruit flavors of lemon, lime and grapefruit. The best sweet wines produced from Grüner Veltliner showcase pronounced aromas of baking spice and stone fruit, with ripe fruit flavors and a rich, full mouthfeel that are balanced by ample acidity.

In the vineyard, Grüner Veltliner ripens too late for most of northern Europe, faring considerably better in eastern countries. Grüner Veltliner is susceptible to downy and powdery mildew. It can be highly productive, with large yields of small berries. Higher yields produce lesser quality wines of little varietal character, so top producers tightly control yields. Those wines produced using restricted yield are full bodied and rich, capable of long bottle aging.

Although this wine may not be on the tip of your tongue it is quite common. In 2021
O’Rourke’s Peak Cellars 2019 Gruner Veltliner, won gold at the National wine awards of Canada.

Forbidden Fruit Winery, BC   2021    Dead End Gruner Veltliner   awarded Gold at the All Canadians 
Fort Berens Estate Winery, BC  2021  Small Lot Gruner Veltliner silver at the All Canadians in 2022

Other produces are Culmina,Single Tree, Summerhill,Winemakers Cut and Pipe Dream.

One that I recently tasted was BorderTowns 2019 displaying flavours of white peach and apricot.

Also had the pleasure of enjoying Winemakers Cut 2018 Gruner Veltliner. One of the most interesting and intriguing wines I have ever had the pleasure of enjoying. Each glass seemed to bring a different tasting sensation.

There were notes of honey,almonds and green apple. The wine is rich with hints of spice and finishes with a zing!

There are small planting of Gruner Veltliner in Ontario.


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