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Hungary for a different white wine?

Floriana Gruner Veltliner


Wine is intimidating enough, right? So many choices so many wine regions. Sometimes it is easy to just stick to what you know. California Cabs, Oregon Pinots, French Burgundies, Australian Shiraz. Going off the beaten path and trying a wine from an obscure wine region is tempting, but why risk it when you know you like wines from specific regions already?

Why step out of your comfort zone? There are so many wine varietals out there besides your typical Chardonnay and Merlot. As fabulous as those varietals are, there are bunches of other grapes (pun intended) out there that are just waiting for you to explore them. One in particular is Gruner Veltliner, a white wine grape grown primarily in Austria. Depending on the vintage and the growing region this wine can be compared to Chardonnay (Burgundy style) and Riesling. This grape can be oaky and big, or have the minerality that Rieslings are known for.

Leave it to Trader Joe's to have a Gruner Veltliner from….Hungary. Just having the grape in general is surprising, but one from Hungary is even more intriguing. Floriana Gruner Veltliner 2013 is actually a dry lighter styled white wine. Not like a Riesling, but a little bit like a Burgundy. Crisp and refreshing with lemon and apple. The finish is the best part - subtle white pepper lingers on the palate.

This really is the perfect adventuresome buy with very little risk. Not only is the wine itself perfect for a summer evening, but the wine is just plain good. The price is not half bad too! You can't beat a $6 bottle of wine. Be a risk taker, buy a wine from a different region and widen that comfort zone a bit!

Trader Joe's in Clarendon and Bailey's Crossroad - $6