Reviews Wine and Food Diary of Giles MacDonogh


Every two years the Austrian growers display their wares in the Hofburg – the Habsburg winter palace in Vienna. It is a mammoth undertaking arranged over three days with lots of parties in the evening for those who have spent their days slurping and spitting wine. Here are my findings – space only permits me to include those which struck me as very good or excellent.

The fair is for professionals only before midday and it is worthwhile getting to the Wachau room at ten each day before the area is swamped. As a friend from Langenlois said ‘Three types of people come here Giles: serious winelovers; people who want to get the full value of their €40 ticket back; and genuine alcoholics.’ By four o’clock all the stands are blocked by crowds of drinkers who look with horror at anyone who spits out their wine and it is quite impossible to taste any more. I have never actually seen a fight break out, but it would not surprise me in the least.

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Giles MacDonogh

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