Steiermark, or Styria, has a very special culinary identity, with wine as its highlight. The typically Austrian freshness reaches its apotheosis in the landscapes of the hilly countryside. Nowhere else in the world are there wines of such smooth precision, aromatic brilliance and robust piquancy.

In Steiermark, or Styria, the typically Austrian freshness reaches its apotheosis in the landscapes of the hilly countryside. Nowhere else in the world are there wines of such smooth precision, aromatic brilliance and robust piquancy. Here, the determining factor is the contrast between warm days and cool nights. The former is due to the influence of the southern Illyrian climate. The steep hillsides in turn – some two thirds of the area under vines in Steiermark is located in the so-called “Mountain Wine Zone” – provide a cooling effect. The variety that links the area between Hartberg in the east and Deutschlandsberg in the west is Welschriesling, with its refreshing apple fragrance and a touch of spiciness. This “steirische” nose evolves into a distinctive grape-y expression with the dry Gelber Muskateller. Also, the Traminer is a Styrian insider tip – especially when it comes from the volcanic terroir around Klöch.

Weissburgunder and Chardonnay – known here as Morillon – as well as the slightly weightier Pinot Gris are included in Steiermark’s varietal spectrum. But the wine producers of Steiermark have been concentrating heavily in recent years on Sauvignon Blanc. This variety, especially from the top calcareous sites embracing the steep hills of Südsteiermark (South Styria), develops a special dimension and style. Still, the impressive Styrian wine family includes also the “Schilcher”, which is made from the grape variety Blauer Wildbacher. This racy rosé from the west of Steiermark is a terroir-wine par excellence, unique and distinctive, which has earned it increasing appreciation.

A picture shows the landscape of Steiermark
© Austrian Wine / Anna Stöcher

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