Where the "Pfefferl" Grows
Austrian wine enthusiasts know the Weinviertel. But nowadays the largest Austrian wine growing region is slowly gaining also international recognition. With a vineyard area of 13,356 hectares, the success of Weinviertel is down to Grüner Veltliner and the regionally typical Weinviertel DAC and Weinviertel DAC Reserve wines.
Principal grape variety
Leading viticultural towns
Röschitz, Retz, Haugsdorf, Falkenstein, Poysdorf, Herrnbaumgarten, Wolkersdorf, Mannersdorf
The vast Weinviertel stretches from the Danube in the south to the Czech border in the north, and from the Manhartsberg in the west to the border of Slovakia in the east. Yet Weinviertel is not just about Grüner Veltliner, there are a wealth of other grape varieties. The region can be divided up into three sub-regions, based on their geological aspects and climatic conditions. A highlight of the western part of Weinviertel is the area around the historic wine-trading town of Retz, with its labyrinth of underground wine cellars. The dry micro-climate here always has favoured red wine making as well. In the Pulkautal - around the villages of Jetzelsdorf and Haugsdorf - and in the extensive Mailberg basin area, fruit-toned Zweigelt and Blauer Portugieser are thriving. For lovers of white wine, the anchor point is another “island”, but this one features primary rock formations around Röschitz, where Grüner Veltliner and Riesling grow with mineral finesse.
The winemakers in the northeastern part of the Weinviertel, around Poysdorf, focus especially on spicy Veltliners, fresh Welschrieslings and weighty Burgundy wines. The northern border of the Weinviertel, toward Moravia, reveals the limestone cliffs of Staatz and Falkenstein, which have excellent conditions for fruit-toned, minerally wines. Herrnbaumgarten and Schrattenberg, villages to the north of Poysdorf, were predestined for their outstanding red wines thanks to the area's vineyard basin site. Further south east, along the edge of the Marchfeld around the village of Mannersdorf an der March, the climatic effects of the warm Pannonian climate are felt, which in combination with the Morava river (the Austrian name is 'March', referring to the river that flows into the Danube), offer optimal growing conditions for Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, the Pinot varieties, as well as the aromatic Traminer, from dry to luscious dessert wines. After Mannersdorf, the journey back to Vienna passes through the wine-growing town of Wolkersdorf, and great Rieslings with pronounced aromas also grow close to the political boundary with Vienna, on the steep inclines of the Bisamberg hillsides.