[Cellar Talks] S05E02 Weingut Alzinger – Leo Alzinger Jr.

On Friday the 1st of April we are moving into Austria for another episode in Season 5 of our talk show Cellar Talks. Located in the famous Wachau region our guest is Leo Alzinger Jr. from Weingut Alzinger. Famous for their Gruner Veltliner and Riesling wines.

About Weingut Alzinger

Weingut Alzinger (about 8 ha) is located in the heart of Wachau in the village of Unterloiben on the Danube. Currently Leo Alzinger Jr. is running the winery together with his father Leo Alzinger Sr. The Wachau region (a valley along the Danube river in lower Austria) is synonymous around the world for Gruner Veltliner, and this typical Austrian grape and wine find their best place on the terraces and steep slopes located here.

In the mid 1970s Leo Alzinger Sr. inherited the winery from his family, who at that time had been selling the grapes they harvested to the Dinstlgut in Loiben. It was in 1983 that Leo Sr. decided to take on the challenge of producing and marketing wine himself. This ambitious endeavor gave Leo Sr. the opportunity to develop his own personal style of winemaking; a style that to this day has hardly changed. Precision, clarity, directness, elegance, and liveliness are just some of the characteristics that have been associated with his wines since early in his career.

An essential factor that contributed to his early success was the ideal location of his vineyards in the eastern Wachau region . Leo Alzinger Sr. has since handed the estate to his son, though he still actively works in the vineyards and maintains the Wachau region’s distinguishing stone walls.

The Alzinger Grand Cru’s deserve a place in the wine cellars of the most discerning wine enthusiasts, they stick with their variety and purity, and their grand refined style.

About Leo Alzinger Jr.

As mentioned there are currently two generations active on the domain: Leo Alzinger (father) & Leo Junior Alzinger. Father Alzinger is still very active in the vineyards and assists his son with the vinification. Leo Junior studied at the HBLA Klosterneuburg. He gained practical experience with colleagues in Austria, Germany and the famous Fromm-La Strada in Marlborough – New Zealand. The talented Leo Junior returned to Unterloiben and took over the vinification from his father. His goal is clear: to get the most out of Grüner Veltliner and Riesling from the various unique terroirs.

His wines are complex and have a strong identity. However, they fully show themselves after a few years of cellaring, these are white wines with great aging potential. Leo Alzinger Jr.’s Riesling was awarded “Wine of the Year” in the 2007 Gault Millau edition. In the leading Austrian magazine ‘Vinaria’, June 2011 edition, Alzinger scores n°1 & n°2 in an extensive Grüner Veltliner tasting in which all top domains competed. Leo’s wife Katharina also plays an important role in the winery, working alongside Leo.

About the Tasting

During the show we will taste one of their most exemplary wines: ‘Ried Steinertal’ Smaragd Gruner Veltliner 2019. As mentioned Wachau and Gruner Veltliner go hand in hand and therefore this choice was an easy one. We opted for one of their better single vineyard (Ried) wines, for recognisable terroir expression.

Recently awarded with a stunning 95/100 points by Robert Parker:

‘The 2019 Ried Steinertal Loibner Grüner Veltliner Smaragd is from the lower terraces and on deeper soils than on the shallow upper terraces where Riesling reigns. Clear and bright yet intense and flinty on the concentrated, stony, lemony and herbal nose, this is a full-bodied, elegant, salty-mineral and rather coolish but also dense and piquant finishing Veltliner with fine tannins that give a fine grip.’

This Gruner Veltliner is available through our partner Ad Bibendum. Click here to find more information (in Dutch) and the possibility to order the wine and drink along with us. Ad Bibendum has a wide selection of Alzinger wines as their proud ambassador, so feel free to order a different bottle if you prefer. For instance the 2019 ‘Durnstein’ Federspiel Gruner Veltliner.

We are looking forward to talking to Leo and learning from his background, experiences and the winery. Be sure to tune in on Instagram Live through our Dutch Wine Apprentice account on Friday the 1st of April, 19:30h CET.

Click here for instructions on how to follow a live show on Instagram Live. If you have questions for our guest you are welcome to prepare them and e-mail them to us or send them as a direct message on our Instagram account.

You can find a link to the recording of the show here.