Riesling Ried Achleiten Smaragd 2017

Franz Prager, co-founder of the Vinea Wachau, had already earned a reputation for his wines when Toni Bodenstein married into the family. Bodenstein’s passion for biodiversity and old terraces, coupled with brilliant winemaking, places Prager in the highest echelon of Austrian producers.

Smaragd is a designation of ripeness for dry wines used exclusively by members of the Vinea Wachau. The wines must have a minimum alcohol of 12.5%. The grapes are hand-harvested, typically in October and November, and are sent directly to press where they spontaneously ferment in stainless-steel tanks.

Achleiten sits east of Weißenkirchen and is one of the most famous vineyards in the Wachau. The steeply-terraced vineyard existed in Roman times. Some sections have just 40 cm of topsoil over the bedrock of Gföler Gneiss, amphibolitic stone, and slate. “Destroyed soil,” as Toni Bodenstein likes to say.

Tasting Notes

Austrian Riesling is often defined by elevated levels of dry extract thanks to a lengthy ripening period and freshness due to dramatic temperature swings between day and night. Wines from Achleiten’s highly complex soils are famously marked by a mineral note of flint or gun smoke, are intensely flavored, and reliably long-lived.

Food Pairing

Riesling’s high acidity makes it one of the most versatile wines at the table. Riesling can be used to cut the fattiness of foods such as pork or sausages and can tame some saltiness. Conversely, it can highlight foods such as fish or vegetables in the same way a squeeze of lemon or a vinaigrette might.

Production Info
Vineyard name
Ried Achleiten
Vineyard size
55 acres
Soil composition
Gföler Gneiss
Elevation
686-1,175 feet
Vines/acre
2,960
Yield/acre
1.6 tons
Exposure
Southeastern
Year vineyard planted
1952-1953
Harvest time
November
First vintage of this wine
1955
Bottles produced of this wine
6,900
Winemaking & Aging
Varietal composition
100% Riesling
Fermentation container
Stainless steel tanks
Length of alcoholic fermentation
28 days
Fermentation temperature
64 °F
Type of aging container
Stainless steel tanks
Length of bottle aging
2 months
Length of aging before bottling
7 months

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