It’s too bad Gary Busey (American actor) wasn’t in Austria around 1985 because his famous quote “if you take shortcuts, you get cut short” might have been some help to a small group of wine brokers residing there. In the years following World War l, Austria found itself in hot water due to impoverished conditions and economical instability. From this, the wine that the country produced began to suffer in quality which caused a small group of wineries to think they were being clever by taking a shortcut in selling their product. The brokers added diethylene glycol to cheap wine in order to dupe buyers into thinking it was a more expensive wine. Diethylene glycol would have made the wine taste sweeter and more rounded, the only downfall was that it is an ingredient in antifreeze and is toxic to humans. Before the wine was ever sold on the market the merchants were apprehended and the only thing that was hurt was Austria’s reputation. Wine drinkers didn’t respect their wine or want to purchase it, and as a result of the scam Austrian wine was quipped about as a wine that was drunk to ‘stay warm’. Jokes aside, Austria recovered well and is now known for their sweet and fine dry white wines. The country is coated with mountains that make for romantic hikes with tall waterfalls and incredible National Parks. After a day of wandering, many enthusiasts enjoy visiting wine makers personally; in Austria two thirds of wine is purchased by the buyer directly from the wine producer. The Austrian variety of choice is grüner veltliner, a dry and crisp white wine that often has peppery notes and pairs well with Austria's traditional dish of wiener schnitzel.
8.859 million (2019)
83,879 sq km (32,386 sq mi)