Here, five of Lettie Teague’s favorite Grüner Veltliners.
Lettie Teague’s Favorite Grüner Veltliners

Weingut Hirsch

There is a gorgeous purity of flavor in all of Hirsch’s Grüner Veltliners, from the affordably priced Veltliner #1 ($18) to the long-lived Heiligenstein ($23) and Lamm ($41).

F.X. Pichler

The cult of F.X. Pichler is global for good reason: The wines are simply in a league of their own. Each combines tremendous depth and concentration with a penetrating minerality. The 2008 Dürnsteiner Kellerberg Smaragd ($95) is one of the most outstanding Grüner Veltliners I’ve ever tasted.

Weingut Rudi Pichler

Although they share a last name, the two Pichlers are unrelated. They both make some of the Wachau region’s best Grüner Veltliners, although Rudi’s are more modestly priced. His 2008 Grüners show great promise. The Terrassen Smaragd ($45) is particularly appealing: very minerally and lively, with brisk and refreshing acidity.

Weingut Prager

One of the most important names in the Wachau, Prager is famous for Grüners of great precision and intensity. The winery’s signature, the 2008 Achleiten Smaragd, is bright, focused and gloriously pure ($60).

Schloss Gobelsburg

Winemaker Michael Moosbrugger doesn’t own this 18th-century property (it belongs to monks), but he tends to its ancient vines as lovingly as if they were his own. His 2008 Renner Grüner Veltliner ($34) is spicy and rich.

More Wine Coverage:

American Wine Awards 2009
Lamb Chops with Frizzled Herbs
Frying herbs like rosemary, parsley and sage for less than 45 seconds in a half inch of oil makes them ultracrispy; they are delicious with tender lamb chops.
| Credit: © Con Poulos