Vivid, goldish-yellow reflexes.
Variety of honey flavours. Caramelised almonds. Exciting complexity from pear, peach, and lychee.
The well-integrated sweetness seems light-footed. High acidity supports the taste without coming to the foreground. Delicate frost flavour in the aftertaste.
The Langs have been cultivating around 18 hectares in Illmitz, the heart of the Seewinkel in the Neusiedler See wine-growing region, for three generations. The microclimate of the Seewinkel and the partially pure sandy soils create the best conditions for viticulture in the region.
His son, Helmut Jnr, has caught the wine bug too, and now in his mid-20s, is training to take over eventually from his dad. Helmut’s speciality is sweet wines, both from botrytised but also frozen grapes.
In the past, this area of Austria was consistently blessed, year after year, with ideal conditions for the production of sweet wines – both from botrytis-affected and frozen grapes. But times have changed. In recent years the opportunities for Eiswein, which require a minimum nighttime temperature of minus 8 Celcius, have been very rare. Botrytis has become more difficult too: drier conditions increase phenolics and thickness of skins, so these grapes are much less sensitive to the botrytis fungus so vital for the ‘noble’ sweet wines. So paradoxically, harvest dates for these kinds of wine have become later and later.
But somehow Helmut manages to turn out the same great sweet wines year after year, even if quantities are much reduced. It’s astonishing how apparently filthy grapes, still on the vine in January, looking black and very sorry for themselves can transform from ugly duckling to beautiful princess; perfumed and diaphanous. It is a mystical transformation, but one which Helmut manages with great experience and huge skill. His vineyards are located on the Eastern side of the lake around Illmitz. The vines are immaculately trained and all located in the National Parkland which surrounds the lake.
Chardonnay BA 2016
- IWC London: Bronze medal (86 Points)
- IWC London: Silver medal (92 Points)
- IWC London: Gold medal (95 Points)
|11.5% alc vol
|Units of Alcohol per Bottle
|Vegetarian & Vegan