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The wines of Prager, Wachau, Austria

Weingut Prager, A-3610 Weissenkirchen 48, Austria
E-mail: prager@weissenkirchen.at Website: www.weingutprager.at 
Tel: +43 2715 2248  Fax: +43 2715 2532

Regular readers of wineanorak will likely know that I’m a big fan of Austrian wines, and in particular of Austrian Grüner Veltliner and Riesling. Prager, run by Toni Bodenstein (right) since the early 1990s, is one of the leading producers in the Wachau. Bodenstein is meticulous about terroir, and understanding how the different vineyard sites under his control work to make different wines.

There are nearly 15 hectares under Bodenstein’s control, consisting solely of Grüner Veltliner and Riesling. 13.5 hectares are owned by Prager, with the balance rented. ‘Using natural yeasts is a strong philosophy for me’, says Bodenstein. ‘My idea is to show the differences between the vineyards, and you can’t show the differences with foreign yeasts. We have to reflect the soil, and also the different vintages’.

I was impressed by these wines, which are brought into the UK by Fields, Morris and Verdin (part of Berry Bros & Rudd, www.bbr.com). 

Prager Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Hinter de Burg 2005 Wachau
Lemon and herb nose with some melony richness. The palate is bold and very spicy with lovely weight and a real thickness to it. Savoury and dry. 90/100

Prager Grüner Veltliner Federspiel Hinter de Burg 2006 Wachau
Youthful. Bright and fresh with lots of fruitiness and some herbs. Lots of spiciness. Needs time to open up. 88/100

Prager Grüner Veltliner Smaragd Achleiten 2005 Wachau
Tight limey, spicy nose. Palate is fully rich but bone dry with a youthful fruitiness. Expressive. 90/100 (£28.50 Waitrose, BBR)

Prager Riesling Smaragd Achleiten 2005 Wachau
Expressive rich, limey nose. The palate is quite rich with bold, herb-tinged flavours. Very rich and complex. Long and bold. 92/100 (£32.95 BBR)

Prager Riesling Smaragd Steinregel 2004 Wachau
Very expressive, complex limey nose with a touch of herbiness. The palate is bright, full and expressive with lime and herb character. Complex with good acidity and great length. 93/100

Wines tasted 02/07
Find these wines with wine-searcher.com

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