Quietly pioneering the cultivation of two less than famous varieties in the North Eastern US, the Troxells continue to focus on exemplifying the defining traits found in Grüner and Zweigelt.
“I’ve been asked – as well as gone out of my way – to taste a lot of American wines sourced from recently-planted grape varieties associated with Austria, especially of course Grüner Veltliner (which growers around the world are now inquisitively and probably in many cases enviously testing) but black grapes, too.
I recently tasted two that stand out for purity and pleasure while making the point that less can sometimes be more. If your jaded palate craves something different for everyday drinking, snap up these bargains while they last, and mark their growers as worth your future attention.
Galen Glen 2008 Stone Cellar Grüner Veltliner
Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania
From 5 year old vines, the Troxells (Galen, Sarah, and Erin) have crafted a Grüner Veltliner brimming with Riesling-like white peach and tropical fruit. Snap pea and white peppery notes render its identity unmistakable. This is so refreshing and delicately balanced
it’s hard not to finish a bottle on your own. If one inserted it into a blind tasting of Weinviertler – though that’s hardly the point – it would be very interesting. (87)
The Troxells grow an understated, simple, but clean and refreshingly lovely Zweigelt, too, offering a good example of the pure fruit virtues of this variety – and believe me, there are a lot of Austrian growers, including some well-known, who are either unable to express that or unwilling, due to too highfalutin ideas about what to do with this grape!”
Posted by David Schildknecht, Senior Executive Oenophile
Mark Squires’ Bulletin Board on eRobertParker.com – Americans do Austrian
Other wine reviewed in same post was Shady Lane Cellars 2008 Blue Franc Leelanau Peninsula, Michigan
Expect this trend to continue:
Galen’s (Vineyard Manager) Comments from the 2010 growing season – An early start in April, followed by warm summer days and cool August nights created optimal fruit ripening conditions. Uniformity is key; with every vine, every cluster, and every berry, we are intent on achieving perfect harmony from our vineyard to grow wine that reflects our soil, micro-climate and dedication to grape farming.
Notes from Sarah’s (Winemaker) 2010 fermentations – Grüner is an explosion of intense flavors and aromatics matched with higher alcohol. Zweigelt, only in its fourth leaf, displays distinctive cherry and concentrated color.
Erin’s (Aspiring Vineyard Owner) Reflections for 2010 – With a dual degree from Cornell University and a summer internship in Germany, a growing season on the family farm seemed appropriate. Grape farming conditions in PA are demanding and unforgiving, requiring a combination of formal education and a backbone of practical knowledge.