Gruner Veltliner, not long ago the darling of wine lovers everywhere, has seemingly been replaced this year by wines that are even more difficult to pronounce (you know I’m talking about you, Txacoli!). While the tides of fashion tend to move inexorably on, some things are worth bucking trends for.

Gruner is definitely one of those things. It’s a timeless classic that stood still as the searchlight of fashion passed over it. It was always a great wine, and remains pretty close to perfect when it’s on, but it will always be a bit of an outlier. I mean, how can it not be? Consider the details: It's not oaky nor creamy, it's slightly vegetal and spicy at times, with hints of bitter citrus pith augmented by electric acidity and succulent mineral tones. You know what that makes? A recipe for critical acclaim, moderate popular appeal, and absolutely insane food and wine pairings -- not to mention an off-the-charts refreshment factor!