Happy Cows Make Happy Wines

Roter Mulatschak
Österreich Red 2019
Zweigelt,  St. Laurent
Biodynamic (Demeter), organic, hand-harvested, and spontaneous fermentation
Burgenland, Austria
Winemaking and Farming Family: The Michlits

Before we even get started…chill this baby which looks like a cranberry plum cocktail. Scents of fresh raspberries, cranberries, cherry but also cherry twizzler, and forest floor funky goodness. This is going to be good. There’s the cranberry again with a zing tingle, cherrylicious, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, a twinge of orange, and some earth depth and pepper. It’s dry yet lively with tiny fireworks of fruit bouncing around.

Pairs with Cheez-It’s: Oddly not what I was expecting, it doesn’t change it at all. Pair it up y’all!

This is my second bottle of happiness from Meinklang. Last was Prosa 2019 which you can see in my post “A Little Slice of Heaven” which sums up where they live and grow their vines (located inside the gorgeous WHS of Neusiedlersee). As a farming family, their 3 sons grew up working the land and each one found their calling (from wine to tractors to animals/plants), and decided not to roam far from home. In fact, they expanded the farm so all the families have space and live in harmony together and with nature. And they have a lot of nature. There’s a whole pile of animals (cows, horses, pigs, sheep, a few chickens) and they are what fuels this whole operation. Yep, their poop is the fertilizer for the whole farm, hence the proud cow prancing on the label. And as it says on the back, “Cows are dancing, bulls are jumping, the lush pastures inhaling life. That’s <<Mulatschak>>, cheerful celebrations, joyful being.” I say raise a glass, and join in on the roaming or “moooving” party!

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Pink Elephants? Don’t Worry It’s a Good Thing

Weingut Strehn
Blaufränkisch Rosé 2019
100% Blaufränkisch
Organic (working on certification for biodynamic), sustainable, and spontaneous fermentation
Deutschkreutz, Mittelburgenland, Burgenland, Austria
Winemaking Family: Pia Strehn, Patrick Pfneisl, Andy Pfneisl and Monika Strehn

Pink Panther pink, or if you’re old enough to remember and were a MTV kid…it’s “Paint the Mutha Pink” pink. Breathing in strawberries, raspberries, roses, a little creamy with a hint of Bouchon Bakery’s Almond Croissants and a little salt. On to give this a swig and a gush of watermelon, strawberries, raspberries, and a twist of lemon. There’s also sprinkles for your frosting that leads to a good bitter herbal bite to offset the sweet

Pairs with Cheez-It’s: nice pairing for a picnic. Throw your bottle in a backpack with some cold packs, Cheez-It, and head up the mountain so you can breathe in some  fresh clean air.

Joseph Strehn founded Weingut Strehn back in 1950, but his offspring are all over the winery now along with some pink elephants, but they warn you to not think of them, just focus on the Rosé. They had the arduous job of tasting over 100 different rosés from all over the world, traveling/hanging out in Provence, and maybe actually by that many they were seeing some pinkies (I probably would be). They started this project in 2017, to get their rosé just right, and guess what…it worked! Their great love for Blaufränkisch is more than just the grape, it’s also a way of life for them. Their enthusiasm is emblazoned all through their site with quotes like, “Save our planet – it’s the only one with Blaufränkisch” and “Home is where Blaufränkisch is”. With their nurturing care and being situated in a wonderful area/climate, it grows well for them and can be weaved into a varied assortment of their wines. Their Blaufränkisch Irrgarten (red wine) is definitely one I would love to try given the chance to find one because their description is absolutely scrumptious!

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Forever Learning and Always the Artist

Artisan Wines – DI Franz Schneider
Zweigelt Neusiedlersee
DAC Reserve 2015
100% Zweigelt
Halbturn, Burgenland, Austria
Sustainable farming
Winemaker & owner: Franz Schneider

Velvet dark deep ruby. Breathing in oak, plum, deep cherry, berries, and candy cola. First sip and cherry combined with dark goth plum. It’s sweet but not overly. There’s also some woodiness and coffee, with of all things juniper berries thrown in to the mix.

Pairs with Cheez-It’s: juicy and less wood

Franz Schneider, his wife Ulrike Schmied, and their adorable twins make up this picture perfect wine family. At an early age, the twins are even getting their taste of the business and learning the grapes through homegrown fresh grape juice. Zweigelt Neusiedlersee DAC Reserve is made from their oldest Zweigelt, planted back in 1972, and Franz selects only the best of the harvest. From what I’m reading it sounds like he is constantly learning and adapting with each vintage and thus the name “Artisan” suits well. Whatever knowledge he keeps gleaning, it’s working in this beautifully refined bottle. Also a side note, there’s recipes on the site that you might like to pair with their wines. Just click on the pics to get the full instructions for a wonderful meal. The pumpkin risotto looks perfect for this time of the year.

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A Little Slice of Heaven

Prosa 2019
Dry Sparkling Rosé
Burgenland Austria
Pinot noir

A beautiful glass of deep red grapefruit with bubbles. Inhale and there’s berries, tangerine, orange peel, a touch of pepper, some salt and mineral. Now for the lovely swish and sip. It’s zingy. There’s raspberries, oh and beautiful strawberries as it opens up. There’s a smoothness, citrus zest, grassy, and dry. This is fresh fun happiness which is so welcome right now. Let’s hang out on the porch swing, listen to the cows and maybe gossip a little bit.

Pairs with Cheez-It’s: makes it tart but less dry. Brings out lemon

The family run farm and vineyards of Meinklang are located in what looks like one of the most beautiful places on earth, and is located inside the WHS of Neusiedlersee. The whole place runs like the “circle of life”. The vineyard is enriched by the compost they produce on the farm, from the cows (which grace the label), sheep, and horse poop. They also have wild herb ground covering throughout the vineyard, along with stinging nettles and thistles. They take in the importance of cultivating the wildlife, the insects, etc. that all play a part in vineyard and farm. In one part of their vineyard they created what they call eco-islands (27 in all) that break up the continuing vines. Each one has a single fruit tree and black elderberry shrubs, which benefit the critters, bugs, and birds. Ok, how much more can I love this family. They have shrews and hedgehogs! They also let their Pinot Gris run free. No pruning here. They’ve dubbed it “Graupert” which is a word from the Burgenland dialect used to describe someone slightly scruffy-looking. I bet this kind of describes a lot of us working from home right now. Going to have to find out how to pronounce this before my next online office meeting.

Neusielder See – Seewinkel National Park stretches through Austria and Hungary. The lake is incredible and the marshlands are just beautiful. It’s perfect place for birding because 1000s of migratory birds pass through, and it’s a great place for those of us that love toads and frogs. Come on, there’s nothing like sitting outside by a lake in the evening hearing those deep throated sounds. Oh and as for the birds, I had never heard of the Great Bustard before. Yes, all of my birding friends feel free to shame me. Wow, what an incredible bird, especially when it displays for courtship or conflict (video found on youtube from Rainer Raab).

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