Soellner 2004 "Wogenrain" Donauland Grüner Veltliner ($16.99)
Just about every time I uncork another Austrian Grüner Veltliner, I whack myself on the forehead and ask why I don't do this more often. Refined, complex and very food-friendly, this variety is gaining some "cult" status outside its native land in Austria, but it's still surprisingly uncommon for a wine so good. This one's typical in every sensory dimension: Clear light straw color. Pear and characteristic green-pea aromas. Crisp and citric flavor, nicely balanced, finishing with that attractive stony minerality that prompts Austrian wine makers to wax lyrical about the benefits of "drinking stones." US Importer: Weygandt-Metzler, Unionville, Pa. (Dec 20, 2005)

FOOD MATCH: Grüner Veltliner ranks close to Riesling in its ability to match well with an amazing range of foods, and it's gaining notice as the ideal partner for spicy Southeast Asian fare. I went a little more off-the-wall, pairing it successfully with a modern take on '60s Italian-American comfort food, turkey Tetrazzini, updated with porcini mushrooms and Parmigiana.



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