It is now a good century since Dr. Fritz Zweigelt’s team at the Höhere Bundeslehr- und Versuchsanstalt in Klosterneuburg succeeded in breeding a new grape variety in 1922. The crossing of the varieties Blaufränkisch and Sankt Laurent gave rise to Zweigelt, which is now the most widely grown red wine variety in Austria, with an area of more than 6,000 hectares under cultivation.
The entry into the world of Thaller´s wine
The Zweigelt is not so much a power wine as simply “the” ingratiator among the red wines. Young representatives of the variety show a strong ruby red with violet shimmer in the glass, while matured top qualities usually present themselves with a deep dark red. Typical for Zweigelt are cherry and sour cherry notes, which are pleasing on the nose as well as on the palate. It is often fruity, velvety and rich in extract, with a medium tannin content. Depending on the type of aging and maturity, it convinces either by drinking animating freshness, paired with a well-integrated acid structure (classic wines), or by a profound and harmonious appearance, not infrequently complemented by tasty chocolate notes from barrique aging. Zweigelt brings all these qualities as a popular partner also in the most diverse red wine cuvées of the country. At the Thaller winery, for example, it can be found in the Cuvée Rochus.
Wine for the whole year
In general, a drinking temperature of 14° to 16° Celsius is recommended for Zweigelt. Classically vinified representatives of this grape variety know how to please well chilled (like white wines) even on hot summer days! These should also be served in a smaller white wine glass, while the top qualities naturally belong in a large red wine glass, in order to be able to show all their advantages. If necessary, please do not forget to decant!
In addition to the fresh and fruity Classic Zweigelt and the elegant Zweigelt Reserve from the barrique barrel, Thaller also offers the Eruption Rot. This is a high-end Zweigelt from highly ripe grapes, which is dense and powerful, with pronounced roasted aromas and impresses with a particularly good shelf life
Full-bodied Zweigelt wines are good companions to dark meat or game dishes. Representatives of the classic line often go well with Italian-interpreted pasta dishes or for a glass in between. The shelf life of Zweigelt is 2 to 5 years in the classic range, and 4 to at least 15 years in the premium range.
Gerald L. Guschlbauer
ZWEIGELT RESERVE 2018
Deep dark ruby red with very narrow violet rim lightening, very tightly streaking; an incredibly animating aroma of dark heart cherries and sour cherries flows from the glass, underpinned with delicate chocolate and cocoa notes; also on the palate cherry and sour cherry aromas play with each other, some mint and a hint of chocolate join; The animating, but well-integrated acidity structure constantly makes you want to take the next sip; an extremely elegant wine with wonderful drinking flow, good pressure and mellow tannins; nothing too much, nothing too little! Delicate, long finish.
For me, the 2018 is without a doubt the best Zweigelt from Thaller (at least) from the last 10 years!
Tasted on 2.2.2023 by Gerald L. Guschlbauer
from the new Riedel-Thaller red wine glass.
ZWEIGELT, The Fire of the Volganoes
A long, long time ago they were active and active, hurling fire and ash into the sky and covering, indeed burying, the Styrian volcanic land beneath them. The highly mineralized, multi-layered eruption mass fundamentally changed the soil structures and this today, weathered over all the millions of years, forms the selective basis for viticulture and its expression in the Styrian volcanic land.
Silent and contemplative, the tufa cones rise today and are silent witnesses of a revolting time. Man has taken advantage of the steep slopes of these volcanoes – he grows wine here! The soils are barren, characterized by high minerality, the stand spaces are narrow, the grape variety is Zweigelt! Characterized by exceptional small-climatic conditions thrive here wines of outstanding quality, which carry on the former fire of the volcanoes!
Gravel, clay, sandstone, tuff & granite
The castle rock of the majestic Riegersburg is a former tuff vent, which is the landmark in the Styrian Volcanic Land! The soils here at the winery are determined by deep loamy gravel soils, which are dominated by sandstone inclusions and basalt sedimentations. From the depths of these rock masses, the vine inexorably draws its source of life. The abundance of minerality and autochthonity are impressively reflected in the typicity of these wines! All these attributes are reinforced by careful winemaking. The subtle, varietal “Zweigelt aroma” is highly inspired by the cool nights during the ripening period. The high level of sunshine hours finally awakens fire and emotions, which remind of a time long gone!
FOLLOWING THE TRADITION
Hand-picked grapes are harvested in a very healthy way and are kept in the wine press. The destemming as well as adequate standing time on the skins with continuing malolactic thus form the basis for profound wines in the traditional wooden barrel aging! In the company of constant care the wines mature here 3 to 4 years in the small barrel, before these are run into the bottle. Wines of this type are long runners and expect in 6 to 8 years their first pleasure maturity!
ZWEIGELT – THE ANNIVERSARY
This grape variety was bred just 100 years ago. The characteristics of a medium-early bloom, a tight growth, a fine aroma with elegant tannin and a high depth of color meet here in a unique way. Zweigelt feels right at home in the Styrian Volcanic Land.
For the “anniversary” we lift this grape variety on the stage and serve 12 different vintages with a gala menu at our pavilion at the vineyard.
Save the date: 17.8.2023