We are happy to be a part of this month’s #WinePW (Wine Pairing Weekend) as it focuses on a topic close to our hearts… sparkling wine! In case you are not familiar, Austrian sekt is the name of sparkling wine in Austria, though it has generally been unregulated.

However, it is recently (within the past two months, in fact) that the sparkling wine sector of Austria has received an official overhaul.

Dreistufige Qualitätspyramide, © ÖWM
Dreistufige Qualitätspyramide, © ÖWM

As is demonstrated by the above pyramid, Austrian Sekt is now regulated into categories. Any sparkling wine classified as sekt must be made in the traditional method and follow a specific set of aging guidelines as the pyramid rises in quality.

Austrian sekt can be made from any grape, but typically one will find those made from Gruener Veltliner, Riesling, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay most common. There are, however, a few other examples such as those coming from Sauvignon Blanc.

For our pairing today we are focusing on Gruener Veltliner Sekt Klassik NV paired with a Smoked Arctic Char Cucumber canapes. This simple recipe provides a lot of flavor and a lot of smiles for guests or even an afternoon snack.

WAO03
WAO03

The recipe:

Ingredients

  • 4-1/2 ounces smoked arctic char
  • 1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh dill
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 24 cucumber slices (1/4 inch thick)

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the trout, cream cheese, onion, dill, lemon juice, horseradish and lemon peel. Spread over each cucumber slice. Refrigerate until serving. That’s it. Yield: 2 dozen.

Gruener Veltliner has often been dubbed the “ultimate pairing wine” and GV in sparkling form is no exception.This sparkling wine is full of citrus and stone fruits and minerality and the acid in the GV cuts through the fattiness of the arctic char, but also compliments the green notes in the cucumber.

Who wants some?