SATURDAY, March 18th, 1-4pm
While many wine professionals will furiously deny it, most wine discovery these days does not happen by driving around in a little Citroen and happening upon anonymous peasants toiling in gnarled vineyards. Nor does it really occur by tasting with producers at the spring wine fairs. Instead, wines are discovered by assiduously tracking what others in the wine community are drinking. This involves heavy drinking in Parisian and regional wine caves and, above all, by slavishly checking one’s Instagram. I know this sounds unromantic, but I’m inclined to embrace the trend. The myth of an isolated palate expertly blind tasting wines in a cultural vacuum is as antiquated as it is obtuse. Admitting that our palates are constructions of the company we keep is a much truer and ultimately rewarding way of appreciating wine. I recommend replacing the old adage, trust your palate, with an even older adage: trust your friends.
All that is to say that I discovered the Gut Oggau wines on Instagram. I would not have thought to try these Austrian wines if I hadn’t seen that buddies in Denmark and Paris were getting jazzed about them. Really? Natural Austrian wines? I was suspicious, but intrigued.
In 2007 Eduard and Stephanie Tscheppe converted Eduard’s 17th-century family estate to biodynamics and started working naturally in the cellar. Most cuvées are field blends; all are naturally fermented, with various amounts of skin contact; the wines are bottled unfined and unfiltered with zero sulfur additions.
The striking labels represent a multigenerational family: each wine has a distinct personality, but all are bound by a common bloodline. The youngest generation is punchy and audacious. Their parents are riper, fuller, more powerful. The grandparent wines come from old vines, and are crafted in more traditional styles. For the story behind each wine, visit the importer’s home page. It’s a fun read. Then come to the shop and taste. It will be the most stylistically diverse tasting of the year.
On Saturday from 1-4pm, we will pour five wines for $10. Swing by to discover which.