Heinrich

Burgenland
www.heinrich.at

Background

Heinrich lies in the village of Gols in the Neusiedlersee area of Burgenland, to the south-east of Vienna and just a few kilometres from the Hungarian border. The continental influence, hot summers and the east and south-facing aspect of the vineyards results in riper, fuller reds, yet Gernot Heinrich maintains finesse in his wines by using indigenous varieties such as Blaufränkisch, St. Laurent and Zweigelt. The 100 hectares of vineyard are located 140 metres above sea level on the Parndorfer Platte, a regional ledge, and on the cooler, limestone-dominated Leithaberg that reaches up to 250 metres in altitude. They have been farmed according to biodynamic principles since early 2006, and the wines have been officially certified since the 2009 vintage.

The vines are up to 45 years old, with all the grapes being harvested by hand. The fruit is carried through the winery by a gravity system, which minimises the extraction of harsh tannins. The St. Laurent is sourced from different parcels planted on the light loam and limey gravel soils of the higher slopes, including 50% from the Rosenberg vineyard, where the silica soils impart complexity and a fine structure to the wine. The Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch (Heinrich's most widely planted variety) are grown on the heavier soils lower down, in the best sites of the Heideboden, between the Parndorfer Platte and the Neusiedlersee, as well as on the Leithaberg on the western shore of the lake, which imbues the wines with great freshness and purity.

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Inspiration

My inspirational wine

It's difficult to choose just one wine but at the age of 20 I was very impressed by the top Bordeaux of the time and they are probably what inspired me to make my own wine. I remember one comparative tasting of three chateaux and two vintages 61 and 66 (Margaux, Cheval Blanc and Petrus). My absolute favourite at that moment was the outstanding 61 Petrus. Gernot Heinrich