It’s been a couple months since we named Justin Timsit of The Rittenhouse Philadelphia the Austria Uncorked: NY’s Best Sommelier. Since then, Timsit joined the Austrian Wine Marketing Board for the biennial Vie Vinum fair and has been the topic of several prominent news articles.
But we wanted to hear from him first hand.
How has your interest in Austrian wine grown since April?
My interest in Austrian wine has grown tremendously since the competition, especially with the experience at VieVinum this past June. As a sommelier in America, the exposure to Austrian wines is somewhat narrow and limited.
How do you see the future of Austrian wine in the USA?
The US exposure to Gruner Veltliner and Riesling is exciting, but it’s only the beginning. I think in the next 3-5 years, we will see sommeliers pay more attention to the great Sauvignon Blanc wines from Sudsteiermark, and serious Blaufrankisch from Burgenland. Even Gelber Muskateller is impressive and has a place on many restaurant wine lists in the States. Having the opportunity to be there with the producers, and to see where the wines come from really put Austria into a global perspective for me. They are just beginning to scratch the surface with potential to compete with some of the great wines of the world.
What advice would you give to Austrian wine drinkers?
There are only a handful of producers even imported into the USA, but a treasure trove of producers yet to be discovered, and importers should pay close attention. These are all wines that take on different characteristics with careful site-selection, and they have remarkable aging potential. I look forward to seeing these lesser known regions come to the forefront of importer catalogues because it will really surprise the most discerning of palates.
We are so excited to have Timsit on the side of Austrian wine and look forward to sharing many more glasses with him at his home base, The Rittenhouse. Don’t miss your chance to meet him in person at Piora NYC on July 28th at their late-night summer party celebrated Austrian wine! Tickets $35 via this link.