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Winery #76: Weingut Stadt Krems (Kremstal DAC, Austria)

Updated: Aug 1, 2022

Our first visit during the two-week Austria-Hungary-Slovakia Expedition was at Weingut Stadt Krems in the Kremstal DAC of Austria. DAC (Districtus Austriae Controllatus) is a specific wine region within Austria created in 2002. Currently there are 16 DACs and wine law specifies the exact grape varieties that can be produced in each region in addition to other requirements. If the winemaker desires to use the name of the DAC on the bottle, they must follow the rules, and thus there are opposing viewpoints across Austria on these fairly recent wine regulations.

Our host, who introduced himself as Goose (also known as Franz-Josef), provided us with an outstanding overview of the Kremstal wine region and Weingut Stadt Krems. This was our first time visiting an Austrian winery, and so we took copious notes during our experience. Goose escorted us to the large tasting room that was equipped with a tasting bar, a large table for events and gatherings, and a lovely outdoor space with more tables.

One of the most interesting aspects of Weingut Stadt Krems is that the vineyards and winery is owned by the city of Krems, with Goose and Fritz running the winery for the city. Wine production by Weingut Stadt Krems dates back to 1452, making it one of the oldest wine producers in the world. The winery currently exports 70% of its wine to 30 different countries throughout the world.

Goose provided us with twelve wines to taste that exemplified the Weingut Stadt Krems production line. Through the tasting, Goose educated us the specifics of each wine by leveraging presentations on the wall-mounted television. By seeing videos and digital maps of the vineyard sites, we gained a greater understanding of the true origin and production method of each wine.

Our favorite wine was the 2020 Ried Grillenparz 1.ÖTW Riesling. Just like for German wines, let’s break down the name. 2020 is the year the grapes were harvested, Ried is the Austrian term for single vineyard, and Grillenparz is the name of the specific vineyard in the Kremstal region where the grapes are grown that is famous for producing excellent Riesling. 1.ÖTW, also known as Erste Lage, is the second highest ranking within the Single Vineyard Wine (Riedenwein) category, representing the top 15% of all vineyards classified by the ÖTW (Österreichische Traditionsweingüter). The ÖTW is similar to the German VDP that we discussed in recent blog posts in that it represents 68 wineries and created a system of ranking vineyards throughout six wine growing regions in Austria. Luckily, Goose gave us a lovely map and detailed book explaining all this stuff in detail.

We found the 2020 Ried Grillenparz 1.ÖTW Riesling to have intense aromas and flavors of peach and pear with a finish that persists. The wine’s round body showed fantastic finesse on the palate with its high acidity giving the wine a refreshing structure. Fun fact about the Grillenparz vineyard is that crickets are attracted to its warm ground as the rocky soil radiates the sun’s heat long after sunset. Grillenparz means “Cricket Hill”!!!

We rated the Weingut Stadt Krems wine experience within the top 25% of the last 91 wineries we visited. We like to send a BIG THANK YOU to Goose for making this a wonderful experience for 500 Wineries!

Check out the YouTube Video of our experience here.

Experience Rating: 4 Stars

Brodi's Rating: 2 Paws Up

Pet-Friendly: Yes

Experience Vibe: Private Experience, Formal Standing Bar Tasting

Reservations Needed: Yes

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