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The Blauer Wildbacher is a relative of Blaufränkisch and originates from a Gouais Blanc seedling. Despite the very small acreage of plantings in its native Weststeiermark, the Wildbacher is much better known as the Schilcher rosé wine.

Austria, Wildbach, Steiermark

Natural seedling from the Heunisch variety

529.46 ha; 1.2%

Red wine grape variety

Vineyard area

It is grown only in Steiermark, especially the Weststeiermark. Only Blauer Wildbacher from Steiermark is permitted for the production of Schilcher.

A picture shows grapes of the grape variety Blauer Wildbacher.

Important ampelographic features

© Austrian Wine / Oberleithner

Important ampelographic features


full-gown leaf is wedge-shaped; three to five lobes

Grape cluster

small, with compact berries; conical, shouldered, often with wings; roundish blue-black grapes and a neutral to grassy taste



very early
early to middle
middle to late
very late

Significance & conditions

Although its vineyard presence is very small, this grape is nevertheless very well known for its rosé-style wine - a Steiermark speciality called Schilcher. With its pink to onion skin colour, the Schilcher is vinified just like a rosé. The variety demands the best vineyard sites. It is sensitive to late frosts and highly prone to oidium and peronospora.

Area under vine in Austria
(as a proportion of the variety’s total area)

Click on the wine origin in the list for a breakdown into more specific regions of origin.

Total area in Austria:

A picture shows a person holding a glass of red wine.

Characteristics of the wine

© Austrian Wine / Blickwerk Fotografie

Characteristics of the wine

Racy acidity as well as a distinctive aroma and taste characterise the fruity-fresh, robust wine - which can be enjoyed also as an apéritif. In gneiss and slate soils, the variety achieves a grassy and spicy expression. Red wine is also made from Blauer Wildbacher, as is Prädikatswein (including Eiswein).



Autochtonous Varieties

Source varietal specifications: Höhere Bundeslehranstalt und Bundesamt für Wein- und Obstbau (Federal College and Federal Office for Viticulture, Oenology and Fruit Growing) in Klosterneuburg, “Austria’s Qualitätswein grape varieties and their clones“ („Österreichische Qualitätsweinrebsorten und deren Klone“), 2nd, reviewed edition, September 2015

Source area under vine: Calculation by Austrian Wine based on data from BML/IACS (as at 28 June 2023). Moving annual total (MAT) from June 2022 to June 2023.