Austrian Wine Tasting: Schloss Gobelsburg
Last week Aspri Spirits brought Michael Moosbrugger, CEO and winemaker of the famed Austrian winery Schloss Gobelsburg to Mumbai. With vineyards in Austria’s Kamptal region, this historic winery which dates back to 1171 was owned and operated by Cistercian monks until 1995. Since February 1996 the estate has been managed by Michael and his wife Eva.
“The Schloss Gobelsburg winery is a cultural heritage of our area. That is why it is not only a winery but carries the added dimensions of culture, heritage and tradition with it. I’m just trying my best to bring it to this new generation as successfully as possible,” said Michael.
Organised at the Grand Hyatt, Mumbai, this tasting was a real education for all of us around the table. Michael enthusiastically familiarized us not only with Schloss Gobelsburg but the production and history of Austrian wine in general, the flagship Grüner Veltliner grapes, and the country’s disdain for sweet wines.
Riesling and Grüner Veltliner are the two primary varietals exported out of Austria. Grüner Veltliner is the indigenous variety of Austria and the most widely planted grape variety in the country (37 % of total vineyard area). Riesling is the second most important grape in Austria.
Austrian wineries produce 250 million litres of wine a year (50-70 million litres exported) of which the biggest share is consumed locally; in keeping with Michael’s admission that Austrian’s believe theirs is the best wine in the world. Of their total consumption (250 million litres) only about 50-70 million litres are imported wines.
Unlike too many other Austrian wineries Schloss Gobelsburg exports 2/3rds of total production. Michael says that his wines do not hide their personality, but show it with perfect poise. Schloss Gobelsburg wines aren’t aged in French oak but in local oak instead, to keep it true to the region.
We tasted the four Schloss Gobelsburg wines available in India:
- Domaine Gobelsburg
Grüner Veltliner 2009 |12.5% ALC
- Gobelsburger Grüner Veltliner
Kamptal 2009| 12.5% ALC
- Gobelsburger Riesling Urgestein
Kamptal 2009 | 12.5% ALC
- Gobelsburger Zweigwelt 2008
12.5% ALC | Rs. 2,780
Currently available in 8 markets across India -Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Bengaluru, Gurgaon, Jaipur, Chennai and Kolkata – Aspri plans to enter the Goa and Hyderabad markets soon. The wines are stocked in most luxury hotels and also select retail stores, informed Sumedh Singh Mandla, CEO (Core Brands), Aspri Spirits Pvt. Ltd.