“I am possibly repeating myself in saying that Armin Tement has made Weingut Tement Austria’s number one wine producer... Dense and tensioned on the palate, this is an explosive, firm and tannic Grassnitzberg with great power and terroir expression. ” - Stephan Reinhardt, Robert Parker Wine Advocate, 94pts
Tement’s wines are true Sauvignon Blanc ‘originals.’ They are highly distinctive, wines of rare beauty and, not infrequently, remarkable genius. At their best (i.e. here), Tement’s Sauvignons don’t merely challenge stereotypes about this varietal, but rather dissolve them. One needs to look to the best of the Loire to find qualitative comparisons, an opinion that critics have expressed for many years and one increasingly adopted by savvy drinkers.
The 2018 Grassnitzberg is classic Tement: a gentle reduction adds focus to a core of sweet citrus and soft verdant suggestions, a distinctive suggestion of sage most memorably. The palate is so well integrated, in fact feels melded in the sense that the component parts feel more an indissoluble whole than a collection of parts. Where else in the world can one find SB of this quality at this price point? - Jason
Lying on the border with Slovenia, the Sudsteiermark or South Styria is quite unusual within Austria for its principal white grapes. Here, neither Riesling nor Grüner dominate, but rather Morillon (aka Chardonnay) and Sauvignon Blanc. The terrain is steep and the soils principally volcanic, and in this relatively unknown territory hide some truly outstanding wines. Particularly exemplary are the wines of Tement, a producer whose consistently high-quality output are making those in the know take notice.
The single-vineyard Grassnitzberg was planted in the early 1950s and is a special site, being the very first acquired by the Tement family. These old vines are planted on limestone (rare-here) on South by Southeast facing slopes and the resulting wines manage to combine ripe fruit with persistent minerality.
The 2018 Grassnitzberg opens with pear, smoke and subtle grass notes. The palate is dominated by lime which is somehow rich, along with a mix of ripe citrus notes along with delicate herbal tones. The wine manages to feel both gently creamy yet zingy at the same time. Utterly compelling Sauvignon blanc.