Domäne Wachau - a region on an quality offensive
Steep vineyards along the Danube, a baroque castle in front of Dürnstein, fruity and authentic wines - the Wachau domain offers everything and more on the terraces above the lush green cultural landscape. On 420 hectares between Melk and Krems, a whole host of winegrowers are present on the steep slopes - with one goal in mind: to bring the best hand-picked grapes to the cellars of Domäne Wachau and create the wine profile of an entire wine region.
This association of numerous winegrowers and winegrowing businesses, which is known beyond Austria's borders, stands for uncompromising quality in all respects. The philosophy that all members of the winegrowers' association have held since its foundation in 1714 focuses primarily on the authentic character of the wines. Finesse instead of opulence, single vineyard sites wines instead of mass produced wines, Grüner Veltliner, Riesling and Apricot instead of rape, wheat and corn. The Domäne Wachau takes the best that the terroir has to offer and vinifies precise, clear wines with strong minerality, which have made the small area world famous.
Pannonian climate - ancient soils
The Danube valley opens to the east and is therefore well served by the Pannonian climate. Due to the warm influence, grapes can ripen ideally and develop a high sugar content, which finally results in wines with strong alcohol up to 14% by volume. The acidity is nevertheless maintained, thanks to the fresh winds that blow through the side valleys of the Waldviertel.
The soils of the Wachau appear like a patchwork carpet - deep soils alternate with shallow ones exposed to direct sunlight. Other spots, on the other hand, lie in shadow almost all day. Primary rock soils with goat and granite as well as loess soils and sand characterise the steep vineyards, whose terraces offer about 1500 hectares for viticulture.
Single vineyards with individual character
The top wines from Domäne Wachau come from the top individual sites on the imposing terraces above the Danube. Strictly limited and endowed with their own unique character, the wines bear the quality grade and the coat of arms of the Domäne Wachau as well as illustrious names of the vineyards on the label:
The heart of the domain authentically captures the character of the Wachau region. The terraced wines, on the other hand, create a harmony of different vineyards. They come from the smallest vineyards on primary rock, whose yields would be too low for individual vinification. Terrassen Cuvées from the Domäne Wachau are vinified in the Vinea Wachau quality grades "Steinfeder", "Federspiel" and "Smaragd", behind which strict guidelines and the highest level of care are hidden
The quality brands of the Wachau
The three brands Steinfeder, Federspiel and Smaragd guarantee the assured origin, constant controls and close-to-nature viticulture. Coveted worldwide and only available in small quantities, the wines of the Domäne Wachau are ambassadors of good taste and Austrian wine. Therefore nothing is left to chance when it comes to quality:
The name Steinfeder derives from the stone feather grass that emerges from the ground almost everywhere between vines and stone terraces. Typical for Steinfeder wines from the domain are their vital lightness, exquisite fruit and an alcohol content of up to 11.5% by volume.
The dry Federspiel wines with an alcohol content of up to 12.5% by volume, which take their name from falconry, are more full-bodied. A feather-play dummy is used to call and train the birds by attaching a piece of food to a long string and twirling it through the air. Wine lovers do not have to be lured with a feather game, they come by themselves.
What sounds like a precious stone, in reality refers to the emerald lizard, which makes itself comfortable on the sun-warmed stones of the terraces. Only the best wines with an alcohol content of over 12.5% by volume are awarded the Smaragd quality seal. This indicates ideal ripeness of the grapes, which are harvested very late, and natural concentration. The ageing of a wine of the Smaragd quality grade takes up to 6 years. The often dry Smaragd wines from the Domäne Wachau are world class and therefore particularly valuable.
The cellar of Domäne Wachau
Huge stainless steel tanks and decorated wooden barrels line the spacious cellar. Here the high-quality wines are developed in a reductive and controlled manner. They lie on the lees for a long time and undergo only a few interventions. For friends of the special, there is something in the ancient cellar of the Domäne Wachau - even if only in small quantities. Clay amphorae, concrete eggs, granite barrels and a marble obelisk for wine ageing. Wines from these containers are rare and therefore in great demand among wine enthusiasts. But those who do not want to do without intensive, multi-layered and unfiltered enjoyment are well advised to try the Riesling Amphora.
Our visit at Domäne Wachau
Our visit to the renowned Domäne Wachau has once again confirmed what we have always knew. Wines from Wachau, if it is the Grüner Veltliner, Riesling or Zweigelt, convince with finesse and the local terroir. If you'll plan a trip to Wachau, why not start with the wines of the Domäne Wachau, which will give you an authentic understanding of the character of the vineyards. Whether feather play from individual vineyards, wonderful cuvées from various terraces or wines matured in amphorae and left in their natural state - the Domäne Wachau has everything a wine connoisseur's heart desires.
More information about Domäne Wachau
|Company Name:||Domäne Wachau|
|Contact & Web|
|Telephone:||+43 (02711) 371|
|Fax:||+43 (02711) 371 - 13|
|Year of Incorporation:||1714|
|Managing Director:||Roman Horvath|
|Vineyard Area:||420 ha|
|Cultivated Vineyards:||Kollmitz, Kaiserberg, Axpoint, Achleiten, Kellerberg|
|Average Annual Yield in kg/ ha:||5.000|