Mara Feißt

Written by Franz Weninger on the 21st of March 2024

I first got to know Mara through social media. When she asked me a question during her sommelier training, I was happy to help. We visited her at Christina and Stephan Stahl's restaurant Kommod and had an amazing evening.
Although we had known Christina for some time, it was our first visit to Kommod and we felt very comfortable. The very small restaurant creates a very intimate atmosphere, which we were not used to in Vienna. Mara guided us through the evening with her open, uncomplicated manner. Mara and Stephan opened Café Azzurro at the end of 2023. Less intimate than the Kommod, but very lively, people drink and talk a little louder and the atmosphere is lively. Mara manages to explain the wines in a clear and uncomplicated way and can tell you something about each wine/winemaker.
I have to mention the Krautfleckerl: I've enjoyed cooking them myself for years, but the version that Stephan and Luis make with kimchi was something new - and I admit that since then I've always made kimchi fleckerl at home instead of normal Krautfleckerl. For those who want to know more about it: there is a report in the newspaper Standard about the history of Krautfleckerl and also about Kimchi-Fleckerl.
Mara is also part of the female wine collective, which brings women in the wine scene into the spotlight. We are delighted that she is describing our wines this time.

Tasting notes Mara Feißt

Nose in, eyes closed. A wonderfully fine conglomerate of dark spice, dried meadow flowers, moist limestone and fresh sea breeze. You almost want to wax poetic about the shy citrus fruit - is it pickled kumquats or the wonderful zest of a Meyer lemon? The nut is light and almond-shaped - wait, hazelnut? A yellow pear rounds off the deep breath.
The appropriate texture surrounds the palate - fine tannin with skilful freshness. Something happens in the mouth, my cheeks notice it too - acid elegant and important - saliva-promoting, appetite-stimulating. The taste is carried by a surprising lack of fruit and wonderfully spicy components. I keep thinking about that wet limestone after a long drought. Salt, hay, chamomile and summer rain. What do we eat with it? Something fresh - maybe labneh, quince and smoked trout.

“Pelure d'oignon” sounds more appropriate than: onion skin colored. But this color of juicy onions catches my eye with this wine.
Impressively multi-faceted on the nose. Is it spice, is it fruit, is it herbs? I think of lightly brewed rosehip tea, lovage, wild cranberry and green walnut. A beguiling combination of dark, fresh spice and light red, serious fruit. Somehow there's also a hint of porcini mushroom and rosemary - mhhh! Taste it quickly!
Lots of bright berries on the palate - red elderberries, rosehips, sour cherry. Then red apple skin and Moro blood orange. All subtle and fine. Slightly ethereal spice: a bit of rosemary, a little lovage and a pinch of licorice. The acidity is refreshing and the tannin provides structure. I eat a light game paté with mushrooms, cranberries and bitter lettuce with it.

The color is grippingly deep: hypnotic ruby red is broken up with dramatic violet in an eggplant hue.
The nose confirms what the name on the label suggests - this is something big. Beguiling ethereality meets the most elegant black-blue fruit that I can recall from my dark berry memory. In addition to thyme, rosemary and pine needles, I smell dark ripe cherries, blackberry juice, serious violet blossoms and again the heated stone after a short summer rain. Hints of smoke and black pepper are excellent supporting actors.
The taste is concentrated, fine and activates all the taste buds. Despite the clear ethereality, all our aforementioned herbal friends and the dark berry notes on the palate, my thoughts turn to the elegant sparseness and freshness of this profound wine. What comes together here already tastes incredible, but will surely, if you are patient, reveal other sides of its glory in a few years' time. The tannin calls for something hearty, with sweet components. I'm thinking of a melanzani stewed with herbs, accompanied by a jus of wild blackberries, beet and black pepper.

The Message in a Bottle is our wine subscription. Our aim here is to present to you an assortment of wines to enjoy, including interesting tasting notes from our guest authors.

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