Gut Oggau Atanasius 2015

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Neusiedl, Burgenland, Austria
Zweigelt & Blaufrankisch
Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, minimal additional sulphites

You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but can you judge a wine by its label? Not really, of course, but Gut Oggau, an estate by Lake Neusiedl in Austria's Burgenland province, possibly comes closest to making this true. The wines here are, quite literally, a family. Each bottle’s label features a line-drawn black and white portrait of a fictional family member, of one of three generations, and the back label explains their imagined personality. So, for example, we learn that Mechthild (a white wine… and the grandmother) is “the ‘kind-hearted grandmother’ of nostalgia that one trusts, but she can be secretive and polarise opinion”. We also learn that Atanasius (a red wine, a grandchild and “an attractive young man”) is “exceptionally popular” but that he “still retains some hidden qualities, which make him even more interesting”. Emmeram (a Gerwürztraminer), incidentally, is convinced that the daughter of Wiltrude (a daughter-in-law and sweet white), Theodora (white), is actually his. 

Atanasius: "Wiltrude's and Joshuari's son. Like his sister Theodora, he has a very affectionate and easy-going nature that is typical of the inhabitants of the Burgenland. He is also an attractive young man but in no way superficial. Despite already being exceptionally popular, he still retains some hidden qualities, which make him even more interesting. His dream is to one day become an acclaimed world star."

The clue is in the character description; Atanasius is drinking well now, but shows potential to develop further. Fruit is black cherry with a lick of balsamic. Barrel notes from both fermentation and raising in old wood. The tannins and acidity present show this wine is going to grow up rather well.