Barbecued Lemon Oregano Chicken with Gruener Veltliner

Barbecued Lemon Oregano Chicken with Gruener Veltliner

Type: Recipe

Wine geeks adore Austria's signature white grape Grüner Veltliner [pronounced GREW-ner felt-LEE-ner]. Bright, citrusy and "minerally"--somehow both light and powerful at the same time--Grüner makes for perfect sipping on warm summer evenings and a great match with barbecued chicken and vegetables. A Sipster favourite!

Party Theme(s): Corks & Coals

  • YIELD: Serves 8 as a party snack or 4 as a main course

  • ACTIVE TIME: 40 mins

    TOTAL TIME: Several hours or overnight with full marinating

  • WINE PAIRING: Grüner Veltliner 


  • 2 tablespoons fresh LEMON JUICE
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh OREGANO
  • 2 GARLIC CLOVES, pressed
  • 1 tablespoon EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
  • 1½ teaspoons COARSE SALT
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated LEMON ZEST (outer yellow peel only)
  • Freshly ground BLACK PEPPER
  • 8 CHICKEN DRUMSTICKS and/or CHICKEN THIGHS (separated if you buy them as whole legs)


  • 1. Make the marinade. Whisk first 6 ingredients in small bowl. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper. Pour marinade into a large resealable plastic bag; add chicken pieces and seal. Turn bag to coat chicken. For best results, we recommend marinating chicken in the refrigerator overnight, turning occasionally; otherwise marinate at least several hours in the refrigerator.
  • 2. Prepare barbecue coals with medium-high heat, leaving some cooler places (no coals underneath) on the side(s). Place chicken, with some marinade still clinging, on grill rack over coals.
  • 3. Grill chicken, turning every minute or two, until golden-brown-to-slightly-blackened on all sides. As soon as chicken reaches the desired brown/black sear colour (happens quickly if your coals are too hot), move pieces to "safe" cool side spots. Cover the grill and continue to cook, about 8-10 minutes total, until a chicken piece reaches an internal temperature of ~74 C when tested with a thermometer, or isn't pink near the bone when you cut in with a small sharp knife. Transfer to plates and serve. [Chicken is quite good when cooked several hours ahead, kept covered in the refrigerator, plated and served at room temperature.]
  • Adapted from Helm Sinskey, Maria. "Grilled Lemon-Oregano Chicken Drumsticks." Bon Appétit, August 2009.