Mediterranean cuisine enjoys great popularity in Austria and is not limited to pizza and pasta. The secret lies in the simple and rather purist composition of the dishes. Spanish tapas are currently experiencing a revival and gazpacho has found its way onto the Austrian culinary scene after becoming popular during the summer. Greek cuisine is a permanent favourite although not necessarily served with Greek wine.
Wine plays a fundamental role in Mediterranean cuisine as an accompaniment to meals. Light and fresh wines with fine acidity are typically chosen to be paired with food and these are qualities which can easily be fulfilled by Austrian wines.
Light to fresh enjoyment
As a rule: white wines are the best option. Starters require light and fresh white wines with delicate fruit while complex pasta dishes can handle slightly riper white wines, provided they are not too dominated by alcohol and there are no botrytis notes. Grüner Veltliner is a universal food companion and pairs well with almost anything, from antipasti to meat. Burgundian varieties come in a close second which is unsurprising as they find their equivalents in Italian wines. Too much acidity does not harmonise well just as too much minerality or spiciness is particularly counterproductive when it comes to pairing with garlic or spicy dishes.
Styrian wine, in particular Sauvignon Blanc, is the ideal companion for an array of Mediterranean dishes. The wine may be medium-bodied and unoaked and certainly does not have to be a single vineyard wine; it should however have ripe fruit in the foreground, few green notes and no excessively loud aromas.
Mediterranean cuisine demands elegance of the wines that accompany it, and this goes for red wines too. Fine fruit, not too high concentration and above all moderate and discreet barrel maturation are usually a safe bet. St. Laurent has proved to be particularly suitable as a result of its herbal notes and earthy tones which tend to harmonise with a lot of dishes.
What the top chefs recommend
Dolce Vita | Klagenfurt
Austrian wine is always a safe bet, even with Italian cuisine.
In summer, fresh Styrian wines are an excellent match; Sauvignon Blanc, however, should not be too intense on the nose, too green and loud. Green Veltliner also has its charm with fish with reduced sauce; a special recommendation is early red Veltliner with clear, spicy fish dishes.
Rahofer | Steyr
Wonderful accompaniments to fish and seafood are Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris; especially wines from Styria with freshness and maturity at the same time are predestined here.
I recommend the lighter version for antipasti. If you want red wine, intense cuvées go well with Mediterranean dishes or a Merlot from Austria; the important thing is that the wine should not be too fruity!
Ellas & Orpheus | Vienna
Light, fruity and easily accessible wines are my recommendation with classic Greek cuisine.
Grüner Veltliner can be a good substitute for Retsina. Veltliners that are not too strong also go well with well-seasoned fish and lamb because they are able to quench thirst. Riesling, on the other hand, is a difficult grape variety, but Blaufränkisch is well suited to it, for example with moussaka.
Find the perfect wine for Mediterranean Cuisine
The best thing is to order wine from Austria online or directly from Austria's vintners!
Mediterranean flair for the ears
The right mood to go with the wine: The right music should not be missing with a fine meal. Bring Mediterranean flair and lightness to your home with our Spotify playlist and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere with a good glass of wine from Austria, just like on your last holiday on the Mediterranean Sea. You might even hear the sound of the waves. Enjoy and cheers!