Just returned from Austria after a 7 day visit.
The Vintners had a difficult challenges and surprises in 2106, a mild winter with the second-warmest February in 250 years was followed by a dry month of March and an unsettled April. At the start of the month, summer-like temperatures of more than 27Â°C were reported, but in the second half of April, there came three nights of extreme frost, and some snow even fell on the early-sprouting shoots â€“ this had catastrophic consequences for vineyards in Burgenland and other areas.
The grape material that was harvested definitely brought good news: a satisfying level of maturity with lovely ripe acidity. The result of this yearâ€™s efforts amounts to very fruity wines with good body, though not over-opulent. This is true for the prime red varieties Zweigelt and BlaufrÃ¤nkisch as well as for the white wines. A lovely and well-balanced acidity supports the fruitiness, while moderate alcohol content provides for pleasant drinking.
Back to the Christmas Markets, with the stalls selling GlÃ¼hwein (Mulled Wine).
Here is the true Austrian Recipe:
2 bottles of good-quality red wine
570 ml water
Juice of 2 lemons
5 oz (140 g) sugar
6 cloves , 2 cinnamon sticks, 2 oranges – cut into bite-size pieces, Oranges for decoration
Put all ingredients in a pot and bring it close to boil.
For additional taste, cut 2 oranges into bite-size pieces and add to the wine. Let simmer but not boil.
Remove clove and cinnamon stick before serving it into lightly pre-warmed glasses.
Decorate glasses with an orange slice.