About the Wine
Franz Prager, co-founder of the Vinea Wachau, had already earned a reputation for his wines when Toni Bodenstein married into the family. Bodenstein’s passion for biodiversity and old terraces, coupled with brilliant winemaking, places Prager in the highest echelon of Austrian producers.
Smaragd is a designation of ripeness for dry wines used exclusively by members of the Vinea Wachau. The wines must have a minimum alcohol of 12.5%. The grapes are hand-harvested, typically in October and November, and are sent directly to press where they spontaneously ferment in stainless-steel tanks.
Achleiten sits east of Weiβenkirchen and is one of the most famous vineyards in the Wachau. The steeply-terraced vineyard has existed Roman times. Some sections have just 40 cm of topsoil over the bedrock of Gföler Gneiss, amphibolitic stone, and slate, or “destroyed soil,” as Toni Bodenstein prefers to say.
Winemaker Tasting Notes: Austrian Riesling is often defined by elevated levels of dry extract thanks to a lengthy ripening period and freshness due to dramatic temperature swings between day and night. Wines from Achleiten’s highly complex soils are famously marked by a mineral note of flint or gun smoke, are intensely flavored, and reliably long-lived.
TOP 100 AUSTRIAN WINES 2017 - Incredibly fresh lemon, lemon balm and lemon mint as well as nectarine and Japanese plum aromas make this completely different to every other Austrian dry riesling. This is so sleek, vibrant and crisp that it literally takes your breath away at the very long finish. From a vineyard 460 meters above sea level that’s right on the climatic edge. Drink or hold. ~96JS
The 2016 Riesling Smaragd Wachstum Bodenstein has a clear and flinty bouquet of bright and crushed (stone) fruits. Sourced from the Seiberberg (420 to 460 meters above sea level) that was planted in 1990 with a high variability of Riesling plants, the 2016 is full-bodied and dense but also pure, fresh and full of mineral grip and tension. The long finish reveals ripe and concentrated fruit that is perfectly intertwined with the salty minerals and piquant acidity. This tightly woven 2016 is still terribly young but provided with excellent aging potential. Tasted July 2017 at the Domaine Wachau in Durnstein. ~94WA
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