Weingut R. & A. Pfaffl
Reserve Golden 2019, dry
Weinviertel DAC, Austria
Golden yellow and rich of finesse in the nose; this is how the Goldjoch introduces itself. A harmony of ripe honeydew melon and pineapple, combined with typical pepper and a charming herbal hint on the palate; great complexity. Powerful and well structured with a nice impression of sweetness and a herbal echo is how it stays in ones memory. Extraordinary with richer fish dishes or spicy oriental cuisine.
Other ratings and evaluation:
- Falstaff-punkte (92 points)
- Silber-mundus vini (Silver)
Serving & Ageing
The vineyard “In goldenen Jochen” is very dry and hot. Grüner Veltliner grapes really get a golden colour here.
The soil leads to an unbelievable maturation of the grapes. After a few centimetres of loess soil comes pure sand like on the beach. The vineyards have green-cover, which is opened only at extreme drought.
The vines have been approx. 25 years old and are cultivated in a dense of around 4.500 vines/ha. To profit from the rising ground heat and to reach a high foliage-wall they use a trellis training system at about 60-90 cm and apply the guyot cutting system.
If you were to wish weather as a winemaker, it would probably be like 2019. After a mild winter, we were allowed to follow a medium-late shoot and a normal flowering time. Beautiful weather was repeatedly interrupted by sufficient rainfall, so it never came to drought periods. The harvest took place a bit earlier, but not nearly as early as 2018 and was characterized by sunshine and cool days without rainfall. With that they were able to harvest fantastically beautiful grape material and expect a picture book vintage for all types of wine.
The harvest took place by the end of October at 21°KMW, picked by hand with a small, well-trained team, which selected the grapes directly in the vineyard.
In the cellar
In the cellar the grapes have been squeezed and must was standing approx. 10 hours before being pressed by a pneumatic press with low pressure. Fermentation took place in big wooden barrels as well as the storage. After 5 months the wine was bottled in our cellar in Burgundy-bottles.
Given the large quantity of wine produced by this well known estate, quality is admirably high. When Roman Pfaffl founded the property in 1978, he had a mere one hectare of vines. Today it has expanded enormously, and the firm also buys in fruit. Seven hectares of vines lie just across the border in the Vienna region, but most of the vineyards are located along the southern border of the Weinviertel, with fine views onto the Danube valley. About 40 per cent of the production is of Grüner Veltliner, but 40% per cent consists of red wines; the remaining 20 per cent of taken up by other varieties such as Muskateller, Weissburgunder, Sauvignon Blanc, and Chardonnay. The grapes are picked both by hand and by machine.
In the top tier are bottling such as the DAC Reserve Hund, half of which is aged in acacia casks; single vineyard Grüner Veltliner from Goldjoch (now renamed Golden), which has sandy loess soils and, since 2012, Hommage, a blend of four old-vine parcels, fermented with ambient yeasts and aged in acacia casks. In the 1990s and early 2000s the wines the were very good rather then exceptional, but their current wines are excellent. The 2015 Hommage is very ripe and opulent, but the 2017 is too high in alcohol.
The strengths of the estate, now run by Roman’s son Roman Josef and daughter Heidi, clearly lie with Grüner Veltliner and Riesling, although the somewhat overworked red wines do have their following. This is a relatively warm sector of the Weinviertel, so the wines tend to be full-bodied and quite powerful.
The variety - Grüner Veltliner
Traditional noble Austrian variety, which give full, concentrated wines with naturally high acidity, but only in case of reduced yields.
In a young wines you can find aroma and flavour of citrus and stone fruit, sometimes with hints of white pepper. The aroma of honey and toast will develop by ageing. Most winemakers ferment and age their wines in stainless steel tanks, but old oak casks are frequently used and some producers keep their best wines age in barrique.
The biggest producer of Veltliner in the world is Austria (more than 60% of world production). The second place is occupied by Slovakia. Czech winemakers are on the 4th place in the world, as it is the most planted vine variety in the Czech republic. Znojmo is the most known region for Veltlinske zelene, which has typically aroma of muscat with hint of almonds. On palate they are crisp, spicy, peppery and mineral.