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RAISE YOUR GLASSES TO THE BEAUTY OF WINE: Kristian, our sommelier, gives us an insight into his work

NIDUM’s guests are exceptional wine connoisseurs. No wonder – it’s almost impossible to resist Kristian’s recommendations. Anyone who has already visited knows who Kristian is – our restaurant manager and sommelier.

And he’s an exceptional one, too! He simply radiates with in-depth knowledge, impressive insights into human nature and, not least, his courteous manner. We quizzed this absolute pro and took a look together behind the scenes of our wine hotel in Austria. A little spoiler before we start: We even persuaded him to tell us his top-secret favourite wines...

Kristian, how long have you been working at NIDUM and what does a normal working day look like for you?

I remember my first day as if it were yesterday. It was love at first sip, so to speak! I’ve been at NIDUM for three years now. I prepare the seating plan and select the most suitable wines to perfectly complement the evening menu. From early morning until late evening, I do my best to recognise even the unvoiced wishes of our guests and surpass their expectations. But I also make sure that all the restaurant employees are happy and support them wherever I can. Every day, I try to be the first in the restaurant and the last to leave.

Imagine that you are checking in at NIDUM as a guest – what service would you use? 

Although a massage on the luxury lounger or a guided hiking tour of the Seefeld peak would naturally be just as enticing, I think I would probably first treat myself to a wine pairing for a meal in our restaurant or a wine tasting. We offer an exclusive highlight for all wine fans twice a week: on Thursdays and Saturdays we host a wine tasting session in our elegant vinothek, which I definitely wouldn’t want to miss if I was a guest. 

What can guests expect in the vinothek? Why are these wine tastings not to be missed?

The vinothek is a treasure trove of 500 different wines and has a great atmosphere and a unique ambience. Our wines come from all corners of the world – from Austria via lesser-known but exceptionally fine wines from Italy to the renowned international classics. During the wine tastings, I recount exciting wine stories and interesting facts about the origins of the wines, the wineries and the flavour. Our guests are welcome to come along time and time again: no two wine tasting session are the same because we try out new wines every time. This means that even the most experienced wine connoisseur can discover something new every time, and beginners get their money’s worth too!

If you had to describe the wine selection at NIDUM in three words...

Multifaceted, exceptional, exquisite. Or even: for all tastes! The selection is very exclusive and varied, which is what makes our wine hotel in Tyrol stand out from the others. We love authentic wines with a distinct character.

What does a wine have to do to make it into the NIDUM vinothek? Do you have a favourite wine region?

It has to create a memorable experience. You know a wine is good when you want to drink another glass of it. In good company, maybe even an extra bottle... for me the top wine regions include Bordeaux, Burgundy and Tuscany – that’s why our vinothek is stocked with a particularly large number of rare red and white wines as well as the classics from these areas.

Autumn is drawing to a close around the hotel. Is there a bottle in the vinothek that particularly suits this time of year?

Yes, the Lagrein TABER from the Bolzano Winery is a perfect match! This dark garnet red wine is matured in French oak barrels. The fragrance is reminiscent of ripe cherries with notes of violet, nougat and bitter chocolate. It is particularly suited to dark meat, game and aromatic cheese.

How many wines have you – approximately – tasted in your career as a sommelier? And which one was the most unusual so far? 

Off the top of my head, it’s way over 1000. One of them is clearly a front runner on the list of the most unusual: the Vega Sicilia UNICO 2012 vintage – the icon of Spanish viticulture. The name “Unico” not only applies to the taste, but also the unique manufacturing process in which the time factor plays a very substantial role. I had the joy of drinking it here at NIDUM.

Do you actually know the individual preferences of your regular guests?

Of course! I have a good memory and can say exactly which wines the guests drank last year, although their tastes do change over time, just as mine do. The advantage of this is that I can always go one better and surprise even the connoisseurs.

Last but not least: Your 3 desert island wines...

I’d naturally need to have my three all-time favourites in my suitcase: South Tyrolean Gewürztraminer, Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Grüner Veltliner from the Weinviertel region of Lower Austria.

Would you like to experience Kristian’s favourites on your own palate? Or gaze at the last golden rays of the autumn sun while sipping a glass of fine wine? Then book your holiday now at our wine hotel in Austria.

Wine tasting: Thursdays and Saturdays from 9 p.m. - €50 per person
Wein pairing: daily in the restaurant - €75 per person

 

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