Known for its spicy minerality, firm acidity and a slightly oddball proclivity for managing otherwise ‘difficult’ foods to pair wine with (asparagus, artichoke, etc.), Gruner Veltliner has grown its fan base, mostly in summer, to the point where (so the Blanchards wine team believes) consumer interest will support taking this niche player to the next ‘level’ – in other words, to the terraces of the Traisental Valley, Austria, where the grapes get better sun exposure by day, evenings that cool more gradually, and, eventually, where the finished Gruners seem more grown up. And, given that our customers already appreciate their ‘Hugo’ Gruner, what better supplier to effect the trade-up than tenth-generation Weingut Markus Huber. The Huber ‘estate’ offerings utilize select single vineyard sites, even stricter focus on physiological ripeness and three months’ lees contact to craft more complex wines with finer fruit character and purer pepper. Food match: pan-fried trout.