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Moric, Reserve Blaufrankisch 2019
This reserve wine has a Lovely delicate nose with enticing red berry fruit, and warm spice. The palate has grip alongside fine boned tannins, and a creaminess to the texture. Moric wines always show Blaufrankisch in possibly their best light. Refined and elegant.
The Reserve is a classic bottling of Blaufrankisch. It marries the great heritage of the Neckenmarkt and Lutzmannsburg vineyards, and embodies our concept of 'reserve' quality: selection in distinct vineyards with specific attributes regarding age, site and soil. Only the best barrels coming out of these vineyards find their way into the Reserve Blend. Mainly based on limestone origins, the elegance and distinctive spice of the Neckenmarkter component and the earthy floral aromas of Lutzmannsburg combine to show a unity of great structure and finesse. Grapes from 26-60 year old vines. Natural fermentation with indigenous yeasts in open vats and oak for 3-4 weeks on the skins. Natural malolactic fermentation. Aged 24 months in oak barrels 500-3600 liters. No fining. No filtration. No additives, except tiny quantities of sulfites.
We first bought wines from Roland on our very first shipment from Austria in 1998. At the time he was working with his brother and father on the family property, Weingut Velich, in Apetlon, which was all about white and sweet wines. His brother Heinz continues to run this excellent estate. But Roland’s fascination for Blaufränkisch, not suited to the vineyards on the east side of the lake, took him elsewhere and in 2001 he released the first wines from the Moric project (You pronounce this ‘Moritz’) . Roland is outspoken, and said openly that the examples of Blaufränkisch coming out of the cellars of most producers at the time completely traduced the grape variety. He was very critical of late harvested styles, often artificially concentrated, and shoved into new oak, to appeal to some kind of Robert Parker-ian ideal. In the process he lost a few friends (though probably they never were friends in the first place). For him, Blaufränkisch is essentially a cool-climate grape variety. He talks of it as a grape with some similar characteristics to Pinot Noir, or Nebbiolo, or Northern Rhone Syrah. Others are reminded of Gamay. But all these varieties have freshness and perfume and delicacy at their best, and this is what Roland is striving to achieve. Now, almost 20 years on , he has numerous disciples, and his wines are, for many, the best examples of the grape in the whole of Austria.
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