Grüner Veltliner is a white grape best known in Austria, and, to a lesser extent, throughout eastern Europe. The name “Grüner Veltliner” (“grooh-ner VELT-leehn-er”) can be difficult to pronounce, so it is sometimes colloquially referred to as “Grüner”.
The Grüner Veltliner grape is versatile and can produce a wide array of wines, from light and quaffable to rich and concentrated. The best dry Grüner Veltliners are perfumed, bone dry and full bodied, with high acidity and distinctive notes of spice and white pepper. It tends to offer citrus fruit flavors of lemon, lime and grapefruit. The best sweet wines produced from Grüner Veltliner showcase pronounced aromas of baking spice and stone fruit, with ripe fruit flavors and a rich, full mouthfeel that are balanced by ample acidity.
In the vineyard, Grüner Veltliner ripens too late for most of northern Europe, faring considerably better in eastern countries. Grüner Veltliner is susceptible to downy and powdery mildew. It can be highly productive, with large yields of small berries. Higher yields produce lesser quality wines of little varietal character, so top producers tightly control yields. Those wines produced using restricted yield are full bodied and rich, capable of long bottle ageing.
As Austria’s most widely planted grape variety, Grüner Veltliner is unsurprisingly found throughout the country. It is at its best in regions like Kamptal, Kremstal, Vienna, Wachau, Wagram and Weinviertel, and high-quality wines from the Wachau can be classified using the regional’s unique classification system—Steinfeder, Federspiel and Smaragd. Top producers here tend to make Grüner Veltliner wines in a rich, full-bodied style.
Austrian Grüner Veltliner may be used as the base wine for sparkling Sekt wines, while simple and youthful examples are customarily served by the glass at the traditional Austrian tavern, or Heuriger.
Beyond Austria, Grüner Veltliner is produced in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy and Germany. In the Czech Republic, the grape is known as either Veltlin or Veltínskè Zelené. Sprinkled throughout Hungary, Grüner Veltliner is known as Zöld Veltlini. It is grown in Slovakia as Veltlinske Zelené, and in Slovenia as Zeleni Vetlinac. Some plantings can also be found in the Rheinhessen region of Germany, and Alto Adige in Italy, where it is referred to as Veltliner.
Grüner Veltliner is also grown on a small scale in regions throughout North America. In the U.S., it can be found in various states such as California, Oregon, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington. Plantings of Grüner Veltliner in Canada are concentrated in British Columbia.
Elsewhere in the New World, Grüner Veltliner can be found in Australia—notably in the Adelaide Hills—and in New Zealand’s Gisborne, Marlborough and Central Otago regions.
Grüner Veltliner has many synonyms other than those already mentioned, including Gruner Veltliner, Grüner Weltliner, Grauer Veltliner and Veltliner Gruner. This wine should not be confused with either Roter Veltliner or Frühoter Veltliner, two unrelated Austrian grape varieties.
To browse top-rated Grüner Veltliner wines reviewed by our expert staff, use Wine Enthusiast’s digital database below!
Dr. Konstantin Frank 2017 Grüner Veltliner (Finger Lakes)Finger LakesStruck flint, citrus and lemongrass start off quietly on the nose. A ...See Full Review$15
Darcie Kent Vineyards 2017 Rava Blackjack Vineyard Grüner Veltliner (Monterey)Central CoastThe nose begins with candied lemon, ripe apple flesh, spring flowers and ...See Full Review$30
Fulkerson 2017 William Vigne Grüner Veltliner (Seneca Lake)Finger LakesAromas of pollen, green-apple candy and white cherry grace the nose. This ...See Full Review$15
Count Károlyi 2017 Grüner Veltliner (Pannon)HungaryThis Hungarian wine is light straw colored in the glass with aromas ...Best BuySee Full Review$12
Josef Jamek 2017 Ried Achleiten Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaBoth ripe pear and golden stone fruit beckon with their sunny juiciness ...Editors’ ChoiceSee Full Review$48
Nikolaihof 2013 Baumpresse Im Weingebirge Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaWonderfully reductive notes of gunflint blend with aromatic notes of baked apple ...See Full Review$70
Nikolaihof 2010 Im Weingebirge Federspiel Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaEarthy, juicy ripeness of Russet pear is evoked vividly on the nose, ...Editors’ ChoiceSee Full Review$30
Schloss Gobelsburg 2016 Ried Renner Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)AustriaCrushed sage, yarrow and mossy earthiness entice on the nose. On the ...Editors’ ChoiceSee Full Review$30
Eichinger 2017 Ried Gaisberg Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)AustriaSalt, pepper and lemon notes own the nose offer the promise of ...See Full Review$29
Eichinger 2017 Ried Lamm Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)AustriaSoft green pear on the nose has edges of dried sage. The ...See Full Review$39
Malat 2017 Ried Höhlgraben Alte Reben Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal)AustriaYeast, wet earth and supremely aromatic pear notes make for an intriguing ...See Full Review$50
Bründlmayer 2017 Ried Spiegel Vincent Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)AustriaThe flinty whiff of reduction still plays promisingly on the nose. The ...See Full Review$75
Domäne Wachau 2017 Ried Kellerberg Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaHighly aromatic notes of glowingly ripe, juicy pear also have an edge ...See Full Review$46
Josef Jamek 2017 Ried Liebenberg Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaA lovely green apple freshness streams from the glass before a fennel ...See Full Review$37
Türk 2017 Ried Kremser Thurnerberg Reserve Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal)AustriaThe fragrance of crushed citrus leaves creates a heady opening on the ...See Full ReviewN/A
Domäne Wachau 2017 Ried Achleiten Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaNotes of salty miso, celery, lemon and green pear unite into an ...Cellar SelectionSee Full Review$46
Nigl 2017 Herzstück vom Kirchenberg Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal)AustriaLemon balm and nettle notes gently insinuate their savoriness into a fruity ...See Full Review$62
Alzinger 2017 Loibenberg Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaNotes of ripe Russet pear on the nose have a pleasantly earthy ...See Full Review$56
Alzinger 2017 Ried Steinertal Smaragd Grüner Veltliner (Wachau)AustriaAromatic notes of ripe pear flesh and peel have a yeasty, sonorous ...Cellar SelectionSee Full Review$66
Loimer 2017 Ried Loiserberg Grüner Veltliner (Kamptal)AustriaFunky earthiness encounters the nose first. After that, supremely ripe pear fruit ...See Full Review$40
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