The IWSC and 13 of its international experts headed to Austria to judge this year’s Austrian wines in-situ. Overseeing the panel of experts was Master of Wine and Judging Committee member Dirceu Vianna Junior. Junior was joined by Freddy Bulmer, Salvatore Castano, Emma Penman, Matteo Montone MS, Richard Lewis, Marien Rodriguez, Igor Sotric, Cat Lomax, David Kermode, Megan Clarke, Eric Zwiebel MS and Sophia Longhi.
Following the first day of judging in Austria, we caught up with our experts to find out the highlights of the Austrian flights tasted so far. With 7 golds awarded - full results will be announced on Monday 5 June - our judges were excited by the diversity of Austrian wines entered.
Looking at the red flights, the judges were greatly impressed by the flights of single-varietal Zweigelt, praising the wines for their bright fruit character that shone through, without the interference of too much oak. Winemakers are allowing the grapes to do the talking, showing strong varietal typicity, a quality our judges are looking for in medal winners. A gold medal for a Zweigelt wine from Burgenland was awarded, our judges commented that this wine, “showed that with a deft hand at winemaking this can a successful region for the variety”.
Moving onto the flights of orange wines, these were a very pleasant surprise to the judges. The best wines showed a great amount of varietal character, with lovely grip, texture and depth from the skin contact. A gold medal was awarded to a standout orange wine.
The final flight of the first day was sweet wines, our judges stated that the wines judged were “outstanding”, with lovely freshness and expressive character. Our judges felt that Austrian sweet wines have a lot to offer consumers around the world and are deserving of more global recognition. Four golds were awarded amongst the sweet wines judged.