Gut Oggau Atanasius 2017
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The Gut Oggau Atanasius 2017 is produced at the Gut Oggau estate by Eduard Tscheppe & Stephanie Tscheppe Eselböck by Lake Neusiedl in Austria’s Burgenland province. Before starting the winery, Eduard made conventional wine with his father in Styria, and Stephanie’s family owned and operated the Michelin starred restaurant & Hotel Taubenkobel (Keeping it in the family – the hotel and restaurant’s co-owner and head sommelier, Barbara Eselböck, is the sister of Stephanie at Gut Oggau).
The 15-hectare estate, in the small town of Oggau in Burgenland is thought to be the first place in Austria to grow red grapes. Each wine is a blend of various types of indigenous organic wine grape varieties, including Bläufrankish, Zweigelt, Gruner Veltliner, Welschriesling, Weissburgunder (Pinot Blanc) and Gewürtzraminer. Each wine, therefore, has quite a distinctive personality – so much so that the winemakers decided literally to make them into “people”, with the aid of German artist, Jung von Matt (whose dedication to the task extends even to slightly ageing the portraits each vintage). Stephanie and Eduard focus on quality as a permanent quest, their aim is to achieve a natural vine balance and process the grapes as gently as possible, allowing them to make the best use of their vineyard’s strength. All their wines are vineyard-specific and express both the vine age and the character of these indigenous Austrian varieties. The grapes are hand-harvested. The wine is partly fermented on the skins in wooden vats and then laid to rest and is fermented in wooden barrels.
The Gut Oggau Atanasius is a wonderful wine, when I tasted it in August I was still tasting it when I got home an hour later – it’s not often that, that happens!! The nose is very fragrant, mainly black fruit and a nice spiciness. On the palate, the structure is forward with firm tannins and an enjoyable velvety finish that brings out the wine’s concentration. Should age up to ten years.
So, whether you want to experience the energetic and bold children (Atanasius, sister Theodora and Winifred), their stronger bodied parents (Joschuari, Emmeram, Timotheus and Josephine) or the more traditional grandparents (Mechtild and Bertholdi), it is well worth introducing yourself to this fascinating family and their incredibly high-end organic and biodynamic wines.
With only 15 to 18,000 bottles a year, Gut Oggau’s wines are one of the most sought-after wines of Austria. These wines are on allocation only and are very limited.