The story of a family-owned company often starts with an inheritance. But in this case, the legacy was not a piece of land, but a passion. And there can be no better foundation for a generation-spanning passion for a product than that!
The grandfather started with arable and livestock farming, turning his modest grape crop over to the local collective for pressing.
But the spark really ignited with the father: what started as a sideline in 1980 had blossomed to become a true calling by 1990. Initially without any pumps, presses or experience, he produced lots of very good wines using a great deal of enthusiasm. Over the decades, the family farm would be transformed into a respected winegrowing operation. Small but perfectly formed with very well kept vineyards, managed by people for whom family means everything.
In 2015 the son took the reins, closing the circle for now. And this also brings us back to that original passion: after studying hard and with an open mind, Philipp Bründlmayer has left virtually no stone unturned. New labels, new wines, new style – but the same drive. The passion for wine, for craftsmanship, for family tradition. The foundations have been laid for many good vintages to come.
Our wines show where they came from without any unnecessary adornment. We manage 90 different vineyards and microclimates spread across 23 hectares. A diversity that is the consistent theme behind our personal approach to wine. The Gutswein, Gebietswein and Ortswein designations are fermented in steel tanks, with wooden barrels used for the premium Riedenweine. Depending on how the vintage pans out. We value alternative wine styles, love to drink dessert wines and are also partial to Sekt – but we only do what we are really good at: dry Veltliner, Riesling, Neuburger and everything in between.
We store and age our wine in Grunddorf, at the very end of the Kamptal valley. Here, steel vats keep the large wooden barrels company. And because wine only lives up to its potential in a carefully managed environment, we run our wine estate meticulously with a keen eye for detail.
But our wine comes from the mighty loess terraces of Gedersdorf and Rohrendorf around 10 kilometres away, meaning that it carries a Kremstal valley designation of origin. A great spot that seems to be made for winegrowing: during the day the mild Pannonian climate hits the terraces from the east, while the hills of the Waldviertel to the north protect the vineyards and bring cool air by night. These temperature shifts between day and night are essential for shaping the aroma and character of the wine.
We don’t want to be machine operators. As a result, many of the steps in the winegrowing process are completed by hand, using techniques passed down from one generation to the next: we plant greenery to ensure diversity and fertile ground, and preserve the integrity of the vineyards. And we take the time to harvest by hand. We trim each vine individually to ensure that the grapes have the perfect combination of shade, sun and wind. We prefer old vines as they grow the best grapes. We respect their intrinsic value and prune them gently, by hand. Each row in the vineyard is showered with attention and the grapes are only harvested once they a truly ready. We set the foundation for the quality we expect, allowing every single one of our vineyards to give its very best.
We can think of many moments when what looked like a random coincidence turned out to be serendipity at play: the foundations of our winemaking operation were laid at a time when quantity seemed to be the ultimate goal. Large, flat plots of land were no longer available as automation and volume production took hold. The only remaining sites – on small, steep and untamed terraces – were the only places for our family to establish its vineyards. Back then, the prospect of more effort for less volume looked like a bad hand to be dealt, but today it is the key to our success: perfect locations like these are a winegrower’s prized possession. And because we grasped the nettle decades ago, our wines now come from the best locations anywhere in the region.
So when people ask us why, we can say: we love the treacherous terraces and the product that we cultivate on them. These vineyards have had a huge hand to play in the success of our wine and we will never get tired of continuing along the path we have chosen.