“Gruner” for short, this versatile white wine grape is an able Austrian wine ambassador, despite its tongue-twisting alias Grüner Veltliner (roughly pronounced “Grew-nuhr Felt-Lean-eh” for the curious and linguistically capable) shows a straightforward and energetic aromatic profile that leans heavily into white pepper and savvy citrus. Gruner tends to carry considerable acidity, which lends itself well to some serious food-pairing versatility. This is a wine that is made to be consumed young, no need to tarry with aging or extended holds. Nope, this wine is best when bought, poured and paired all in the same day.
The Etz Estate is in its fourth generation of family wine production. This particular 2013 Etz Gruner comes down the line from some of the region’s more notable vineyard locations and pours generously from a 1 Liter bottle (no skimpy 750 mls here). Expect the nose to offer up snappy Granny Smith apple appeal with a serious dash of sassy white pepper spice. There’s some lime zest and unmistakable grapefruit-driven notes in the mix as well. The palate profile rides high and tight with a lighter-body giving way to perky citrus swirls, well-wrapped in a crisp minerality and carrying a vibrant, mouth-watering acidity from start to finish. Fresh and light with interesting aromas and delicious palate appeal, this well-priced, well-managed Gruner is perfect for party-pairings when you want to introduce a crowd to a “new” grape and have something that can handle funky, hard-to-pair veggies (think: asparagus and artichoke dips) like a champ.