This is a complex wine - it has just the slightest hint of botrytis on the nose along with blossom and cracked white pepper. On the palate the wine is rich, dense, and complex, with good minerality and a malty delicate spiciness with a hint of mint. Very long, slightly earthy finish.
The grapes for this wine are picked late, gently pressed and are all processed using gravity rather than pumps. Fermentation takes place in large oak casks, developing on fine lees.
Leo Alzinger is based in Unterloiben and is without doubt one of the true Wachau superstars. A mature Alzinger wine is a joy to imbibe, if somewhat hard to come by.
This fine estate makes superlative single vineyard wines from premium mountain sites including Loibenberg, Steinertal, Hollerin and Liebenberg, with soil types including sandy loam and eroded primary rock.
The estate totals about 10 hectares and production is very small at just 70,000 bottles per year. Grape varieties are 60% Grüner Veltliner, 40% Riesling.
There are in fact two Leo Alzingers, father and son. Leo Senior inherited the family winery in the 1970s when they used to sell their grapes to the cooperative. In 1983 he started making his own wines, which within 10 years established a cult following! In 2000, Leo Junior joined his father and is now in charge and the quality is still up there with the best. The third generation has a few years to go yet...
Whatever the generation, Leo Alzinger's wines are simply awesome. They are right up there with the very best the Wachau has to offer and deserve every bit of attention they get. The superstar status is well deserved, yet this remains a small family business embodying individuality and an unceasing quest for quality.
In a nutshell the Alzinger philosophy is to intervene as little as possible yet as much as necessary to achieve their goals making wines that truly reflect the individual characteristics of each vineyard. It may sound like a cliché but they are truly terroir expressive wines.