What the heck is…Blaufrankisch?

Besides being fun to say, Blaufrankisch is a red wine most commonly exported from Austria. Spicy like a Syrah, (minus the roast beef and pastrami flavors that have been making me gag), and light like a Pinot noir. It’s also grown in Croatia, Washington state, and Germany, where it is known as Lemburger. For more on that click here but for now, let’s concentrate on what it is, where it’s available and what it pairs with.
Similarities abound between a killer gamay and German pinots. Cherry and pepper with a nice acid backbone make this for an ideal food wine. The tannins are supple and the alcohol is relatively low. As long as you avoid the overly oaked Blaufrankish’s when they’re young, you shouldn’t have any problem picking one off the shelf of a reputable wine shop to have with dinner tonight.

Here are my picks:

2008 J. Heinrich Blaufränkisch

Another light, unfussed with Blaufrankisch that could easily become your go to Summer red at $13.99 a bottle.

2006 Wenzel Blaufränkisch

Beautiful, light, elegant, and a great price at $17.99 a bottle for  a pure expression of Blaufrankisch

2007 Moric Blaufränkisch

An ageable Powerhouse from a killer vintage. This one will go with your over the top meat dishes.

And for something closer to home try Washington’s Steel “Blue Franc.”

The lighter versions can pair nicely with lighter meat dishes and takes nicely to a slight chill. Burgers off the grill with pepper Jack, and smoked paprika aioli would be a perfect pairing for a cellar temperature Blaufrankisch, where as an older age able Blaufrankisch would pair better with medium-rare lamb chops and a mint and red pepper vinaigrette with roasted potatoes.

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One Response to “What the heck is…Blaufrankisch?”

  1. […] Wine Chef Random notes on everything relevant to the food, wine, and restaurant world. « What the heck is…Blaufrankisch? […]

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