Stadt Krems is one of Europe’s oldest wineries. We first tasted its wines for our Report # 25 The Wines of Austria. We recently met with Franz-Josef “Goose” Gansberger, who manages both Stadt Krems and Weingut Stift Göttweig, and eagerly accepted his offer to again taste his wines. The wines are from the very good 2015 and very challenging 2016 vintages.
The history of Stadt Krems begins in 1210 when Duke Leopold IV founded a public hospital in Krems and donated vineyards to it. Then in 1452 the Imperial Burggrave of Krems donated additional vineyards to the city, leading to the establishment of the winery, which was located in the Town Hall until 1744.
Stadt Krems has 31 ha of estate vineyards located within the city of Krems and another 50+ ha of vines under contract with 60 or so growers. Its vineyards include two “Erste Lage” [Grand Cru] vineyards—Kremser Wachtberg and Steiner Grillenparz. These are among the 54 vineyards designated as the top Danube vineyards by the Österreischische Traditionsweingüter (Association of Austrian Traditional Wine Estates) in its 2011 Classification.
The wines evaluated here are from the very good 2015 and very challenging 2016 vintages. The single vineyard offerings are ageworthy wines that will only improve with additional time in the cellar. Fritz Miesbauer is the winemaker.
Importer: Craft + Estate (Winebow Group)
Stadt Krems 2016 Grüner Veltliner Kremstal Niederoesterreich ($15) 89 This entry level Grüner is a crisp, fresh wine perfect for summer fare. It has a flavorful palate of quince and citrus with mineral and white pepper notes on the finish. Wonderfui value!
Stadt Krems 2015 Grüner Veltliner Ried Weinzierlberg Kremstal Niederöesterreich ($25) 91 A single vineyard Grüner with a sumptuous nose of sweet stonefruit and meadow herbs. Notes of mandarin and tangy yellow peach accented by white pepper show on a juicy palate, finishing with nervy acidity. Harvested in three stages from the Weinzierlberg with loess and gravel soils. Fermented and aged in stainless steel.
Stadt Krems 2015 Grüner Veltliner Ried Wachtberg Kremstal Reserve Niederöesterreich ($44) 92 This single vineyard Grüner offers intense stone fruit and quince scents with an accent of verbena. It offers palpable density and succulent juiciness in the mouth along with stony minerals. Finishes very long and rich. From the 3 acre Wachtberg vineyard with calcareous soils; given 36 hours skin contact before pressing. Fermented using ambient yeast and aged sur lie in 1/3 500L barrels and 2/3 stainless steel.
Stadt Krems 2015 Riesling Ried Grillenparz Kremstal Reserve Niederöesterreich ($44) 93 The Riesling opens with a perfume of tangy peach and citrus and offers voluptuous ripe flavors and minerals with beautifully integrated acidity on a precise palate. The finish is rich and fine. From the mostly old vines (35 years) of the 4.8 ha Erste Lage (first growth) Grillenparz vineyard; fermented and aged in stainless steel.