Discover Germany, Issue 39, June 2016

Page 23

Discover Germany | Special Theme | Wine World Austria 2016

Long slopes and an ideal geographical position with the protecting foothills of the Leithagebirge in the back allow long ripening phases for the grapes, especially for the excellent variety Blaufraenkisch. The Leithagebirge forms part of the Alps and therefore the ground shows traces of the so-called Leitha Limestone. It both reflects the sunlight and allows good drainage. This soil is ideal for grapes like Pinot blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot noir and helps to create their full, mineral note. Other grapes need other soil and the Prieler terroir also features brown clay and mica slate. Brown clay preserves moisture, is rich in iron and provides ideal conditions for the ‘Blaufränkisch’, a Burgenland-classic of a lush, fruity and peppery-spicy aroma. Last but not least, the mica slate of the Goldberg hill, known since 1555 for providing the best slopes in the area, acts as a kind of super storage for sunlight. Well known for its wine-growing advantages also in Spanish priories or northern Rhone, the heat-saving mica slate supports powerful wines with diverse mineral-rich bouquets. “We’d like to put the character of the region into the bottle,” says Georg Prieler. Quality-increasing crop limitation and short pruning as well as high foliage walls and a great deal of patience allow the

Prielers to reach that goal. They allow time for the grapes to mature and, as they say: “The rhythm is provided by nature itself.” I am reaching Georg Prieler coming back from the vineyard as there has been frost alarm in this year’s unusually cold spring. As a trained winemaker, Georg Prieler has gained practical experience internationally before he joined the family business. His father’s expertise, fine-tuned over the span of three decades, lies within soil cultivation, pruning and harvest. With a great deal of patience and unrelenting support by his wife, it took 20 years for Engelbert Prieler until he was finally satisfied with the outcome of his meticulous efforts of growing a small but special grape range from great, great vineyard side. Each type is growing under respective ideal conditions. Today his son contributes to what has been always a family tradition of creating some of the most excellent and well-known wines in the area. “In Schützen, we harvest the best nature has to give”, it says on the Prieler website. A close observation of the climate and a life at the pulse nature has given them the knack to produce quality wines praised by both experts and the press. “A lot of what we value about the region is mirrored in our wines. They combine a lightness with power and just like the people of the area, they are open and approachable but not

easy to fathom.”Mystery wines? Well, with a little help of Silvia Prieler, who holds a Ph.D. in microbiology, they have already arrived at presenting one of the most hailed Pinot noirs throughout the region. Prieler wines are characterised by the terroir they grow on. Their extraordinary spot in the countryside around Schützen at Lake Neusiedl, set within protected nature and lined by the hills of the Leithagebirge, provides for a magic landscape – and magic wines. Main Photo: The Prieler family: Georg, Silvia, Irmgard and Engelbert Prieler (from left to right). © Steve Haider From bottom left: Wine cellar. © Steve Haider Prieler’s ‘Blaufränkisch’ Goldberg. © WEIN & CO Prieler’s Pinot blanc Leithaberg. © Hannes Strondl Vineyard. © Joe Haide Vineyards. © Manfred Klimek

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