When experimenting with Ice Wines or Eiswein, it may be in your best interest to try a lower cost brand first then work your way up. We started with a 2006 Covey Run Reserve and have moved on to a 2004 Höpler Eiswein, a product from Burgenland Austria.
Ice Wines are sweeter, lighter and mild on the alcohol so they tend to make great after dinner drinks. The Höpler Eiswein is a 12% ABV wine, which is a bit more than we expected. The bottle is fairly small, 375ml makes up the container and serves half of what a traditional wine would serve to average consumers. But, practice your sipping and you’ll do just fine.
This Eiswein might as well be gold plated as it fits the color (and price) so well, a thick gold coloring. Roll it around the glass, you’ll notice it lines the edges with a thin coat of wine for a few seconds before slowly crawling down in streaks and lines. This isn’t an ordinary wine by far.
The nose of the Höpler reminds us of a sweet green grape wrapped in a coating of sugar and dipped in molasses and vanilla. This is what we imagine an ice cream flavor wine would smell like. A nice taste of the golden delight brings us flavors of vanilla, ceder, rich grape and the fillings inside a Boston cream pie.
There is a slight wood taste to the wine and shows its age well. The acids are lighter than expected only because the sweetness takes over so easily and coats your mouth with a sticky desert-like layer. The acids on the back-end of the palate play well with the sweet start giving us a full three course meal in a cup.
The 2004 Höpler Eiswein explains its higher cost in the tastes and scents of the product. At USD $50.00 you’ll probably hesitate before picking up a 375ml bottle of Eiswein but the taste demands the cost. Although we won’t buy a bottle every week, we’ll probably store one in the wine fridge to entertain close friends at our next party.