Find out who won the regional trophy for over £10. And the winner is...
Heinrich, Zweigelt, Burgenland 2009 (red over £10)
Gernot Heinrich and his Bavarian wife Heike represent the immediate post-revolutionary generation of winemakers in Austria.
Gernot started early. Fresh out of wine school in Klosterneuburg he took over the family land in the Evangelical enclave of Gols in the mid-eighties and began making the sort of wines that made the Austrian wine press hold its breath in admiration.
His reputation has grown like his house: an ultra-modern, brutalist construction poking two fingers at the more traditional constructions around it.
In the past decade, Heinrich has been above all the men who have made some of the most exciting (and expensive) garage-style, biodynamic red wines in the country; the sort of wine every restaurant craves for its list, but few manage to secure a single bottle allocation.
That being said, this trophy-winning Zweigelt is good value for money. It is not his top red ‘cuvée’ Pannobile, made from native Austrian grapes, nor does the fruit come from the vineyards that made him famous, like Gabarinza, Goldberg or Salzberg, but from thirty year old vines planted on the land between Gols’ sleek hills and the shores of the shallow lake.
It is an introduction to Heinrich’s wines, albeit one, that in its irrepressible fruit and clear dynamics is the purest essence of Zweigelt.
The estate is of modest dimensions (10 hectares), but like most Austrian growers, Heinrich rents vineyards and buys in grapes when he needs them.
£16.99 Hro Lib WFM You www.heinrich.at +43 2173 31 760
Written by Giles MacDonogh