1. Sparkling Wines - fizzy & animating

Austria produces top quality sparkling wines – Sekt - a tradition that dates back to the middle of the 19th century. These wines are delightful on their own, and match well with a wide variety of foods. They also stand side by side with Champagne, Cava and wines of similar ilk.

A picture shows scallops
© AWMB / Ulli Kohl

Austrian sparkling wines are made by individual wine makers as well as large-scale producers. The varieties used are mainly Welschriesling and Grüner Veltliner; other favourites are Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. Although Welschriesling and Grüner Veltliner are cultivated only in the Weinviertel, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc thrive also in other wine-growing regions. All four varieties make wonderful wines full of character. The racy Schilchersekt (produced in Weststeiermark) represents a successful market niche, while Burgundian-style cuvées, produced in the French traditional style, remain in high demand. While accompanying food, the wines reveal their different aromas, thanks to the sprite acidity. Dry Sekt is usually served with smoked foods, such as fish - salmon, samlet, and trout - fowl or ham. Moreover, Austrian Sekt even turns finger food into a festive delicacy.