A Guide to Zweigelt: The Austrian Red Wine

Zweigelt is a red wine grape variety that is widely grown in Austria. It is a relatively young grape variety, having been created in 1922 by the Austrian plant breeder Dr. Fritz Zweigelt. The grape is a cross between the St. Laurent and Blaufränkisch grape varieties, which are Austrian wine natives. According to expert Stephen Brook, “Austria as a whole is still white wine country, but of the 30% of red vineyards, by far the most widely planted grape is Zweigelt at 6,130 hectares.” 

The Characteristics of Zweigelt 

Zweigelt is a versatile grape that is grown in all of Austria's wine regions. It is particularly well-suited to Austria's cool climate, as it ripens early and is resistant to cold temperatures. This allows the grape to be grown in cooler, higher-altitude vineyards, which are not suitable for many other grape varieties. 

When you go to buy red wine, consider Zweigelt! The grape produces medium-bodied wines with moderate acidity and tannins. The wine has a vibrant ruby color and aromas of dark berries, such as blackberry and black cherry, as well as spicy notes of pepper and cinnamon. In the mouth, the wine has a smooth, velvety texture with flavors of dark fruit, vanilla, and sometimes even a hint of chocolate. 

Great with Food and a Great Value 

Zweigelt is a very food-friendly wine that pairs well with a variety of dishes, and you favorite wine store California has some great options when you buy wine online. It is especially well-suited to traditional Austrian cuisine, such as roast pork, Wiener Schnitzel, and game dishes. The wine also pairs well with other meat dishes, such as beef, lamb, and duck, as well as with hearty vegetable dishes and stews. 

Zweigelt is also an excellent choice for those looking for a more affordable alternative to some of the more well-known red wine varieties. While it is not as well-known as some other grape varieties, Zweigelt is gaining popularity among wine lovers, both in Austria and abroad. 

Austrian wine, in general, has gained a reputation for high quality and unique flavors, and Zweigelt is no exception. In recent years, Austrian winemakers have increasingly focused on producing high-quality Zweigelt wines, and the grape has been gaining recognition and awards at international wine competitions. 

In all, Zweigelt is a versatile, affordable, and high-quality red wine grape variety that is gaining popularity among wine lovers worldwide. With its unique flavor profile and food-friendly nature, it is definitely worth trying for anyone looking for something new and exciting in the world of wine. 

A Blending Partner 

Zweigelt is often used in blends with other red grape varieties in Austria and beyond. Blending allows winemakers to create wines with more complexity and balance by combining the different flavors, aromas, and structural elements of different grape varieties. 

In Austria, Zweigelt is often blended with other local red wine grape varieties, such as Blaufränkisch and St. Laurent. These blends can vary in style, from lighter, fruitier wines to more full-bodied, complex wines that can be aged for several years. 

Outside of Austria, Zweigelt is sometimes blended with other grape varieties to add complexity and depth. For example, some winemakers in Germany and Switzerland blend Zweigelt with Pinot Noir to create wines with a unique flavor profile that combines the fruitiness of Zweigelt with the elegance and structure of Pinot Noir. 

Overall, Zweigelt's versatility and compatibility with other grape varieties make it a valuable component in many different red wine blends.

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