In my quest to find interesting German and Austrian wines in UK supermarkets, I recently came across an excellent Austrian Grüner Veltliner, sold in Sainsbury's 'taste the difference' range. I love Grüner, especially with food, and this wine had the added benefit of being made by a well known Austrian winemaker, Markus Huber. When I saw that the 2009 vintage hit the shelves, I had to grab a bottle to see if it would be as good as the 2008.
Well, it is certainly a decent wine, to answer that question straight away, but it also confused the hell out of me. So imagine you sit down with friends, you expect a dry, crisp white wine, you circle the table, pouring wine, and before you are done the first guest shouts: 'bubblegum'. I looked confused, so did the others, but before I could sit down and inspect the wine closer everyone started nodding - and I joined a few seconds later. A wine that smells of bubblegum. This was most confusing. This is not to say that it just smelled of bubblegum - in fact, all the lovely trademarks for Grüner Veltliner were present too, such as white pepper, green apple and citrus acidity.
The bubblegum experience continued on the tongue, in a very delicate and not at all unpleasant way (don't think cheap bubblegum, think (if that were possible) lovely, hand-crafted bubblegum), adding an extra layer to a wine otherwise dominated by green apple and peppery notes, a wine that was sharp and crisp.
Everyone agreed it was a decent wine, and especially those of my guests who had not tried Austrian whites before said they might seek out similar wines, or even this one, in the future. Personally though, I prefer the 2008 that seemed to me to be the more coherent wine. If you can live with a wine with bubblegum aromas, you might find this quite pleasing.