We Drink Wine Spritzers – Don’t Judge
Weinorgal. A sultry wine bar located off a local side street not far from the heartbeat of Vienna. But don’t go thinking this is posh joint with leather chairs and fancy artwork. It’s the kind of place only locals know about. Where the floors are a strew with sawdust and peanuts. A haze of smoke loomed under the curved white brick archways of the low hanging ceilings in what was once the vault of a Gothic monastery. The bar was made from old relics of a church organ. The clouds of smoke were so think that I could barely see across the twenty feet from one side of the bar to the other. Seductive almost. Patrons romantically hunched over tables puffing cigarettes while elegantly swishing the wines of their country to a background classic Austrian pop tunes. (Okay, maybe it wasn’t that seductive.) Occasionally, a table would belt out a chorus to a song from their past. (Definitely not seductive) It was our kind of joint.
We were beered out. Munich, Bamberg, and Salzburg were crossed off our itinerary. All three cities with proud beer traditions. I know Salzburg may politically be located in Austria, but their history, and culture, belongs to Bavaria. While we are definitely fans of quality beer, I would not qualify the Gourmands as beer people. It was time for wine. I asked the waitress for a dry, local red. She informed me quite assuredly that all their wines were local. She followed her lashing with a smile and a “I have just the wine for you.” I don’t remember what she poured me, but it was heavy of dark red fruits, dirt, licorice, and, oddly, cigarette smoke. It was good, but it didn’t hit the spot. The weather was warm, I was a bit dehydrated from walking all day, and the cigarette smoke that now filled every part of my lungs had also dried out my mouth. I fought the beer urge (damn a Helles would be perfect now). I watched as the waitress carried order after order of mugs of what looked clear soda water. I stopped her on one return trip and asked what everyone was ordering. “Spritzers!” We placed an order for a round and then had two more. We were hooked. White wine and sparkling water. Who wouldof thunk?
Wine spritzers have quickly become our pool drink of choice this summer. They’re light, refreshing, and not high in alcohol content. It’s the kind of drink you can sip on all day without getting overly intoxicated. Perfect with a good novel and your feet in the water, or just some good ole back-porch-sipping. We’ve been mixing various versions of Black Box whites with sparkling water trying to find the perfect match. We’ve concocted spritzers with their Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, and Moscato. I recommend the former two as the later was a bit too sweet. Give it a try and let me know what you think. Or, share what you will be drinking poolside this summer.