The winery in the city Klosterneuburg is one of the oldest and most traditional wineries in Austria. The origin of Klosterneuburg Abbey goes back to the Babenberg Margrave Leopold III. (1073-1136), who moved his residence to Klosterneuburg in 1113 and founded the monastery in 1114. In 1133, the ruler summoned the Augustinian canons to Klosterneuburg, who over the centuries developed the monastery into a centre for religion, science, culture and also viticulture. Wine was exported to many countries as early as the Middle Ages, was widely known and the monastery was given the name "Zum rinnenden Zapfen" by the people. In 1330 a great fire broke out, which destroyed half of the town. The fire water slowly ran out and the monks began to carry buckets of mass wine to the altar. With the precious water the fire could finally be extinguished. When the Turks approached in 1683, 6,000 buckets of wine (about 360,000 litres) were brought from the monastery cellar to Bavaria to safety. From 24 August onwards, 13,000 Turks under Kara Mustapha (~1630-1683) besieged the city. Canon Wilhelm Lebsaft began to pour out wine to the defenders. This motivated and strengthened the defenders and they managed to repel the attack.
As a result of the rigorous church reforms under the Habsburg Emperor Joseph II (1741-1790), Pope Pius VI (1717-1799) travelled to Vienna in 1782 to negotiate with the Emperor about the withdrawal of these measures. On the way, he also visited the monastery of Klosterneuburg on April 20 and it is reported that the wine served was very popular. Emperor Napoleon (1769-1821) visited the monastery twice. On 2 December 1805 he defeated the Austrian and Russian troops in the Battle of Three Emperors at Austerlitz. The French then entered Klosterneuburg. On 20 December Napoleon visited the wine cellar; he was offered an "old Austrian". He praised him with the words "that this is not dissimilar to Rhine wine". In 1809 Napoleon occupied Vienna for the second time and before that he moved back to Klosterneuburg.
His soldiers plundered exactly 8,241 buckets of the best wine from the monastery cellar. They also tapped the famous "Thousand Bucket Barrel", which had been used since 1711 to hold the wine on toe. The French got drunk for days and let the rest of the wine flow out. After that the barrel was never filled again, but only used for the famous barrel slide. At that time the monastery cultivated a total of 1,200 hectares of vineyards in Klosterneuburg alone. Today, there are "only" about 100. This is mainly due to phylloxera, which struck relatively late in Klosterneuburg at the end of the 19th century and destroyed many vineyards. At that time the wine was mainly made from the grape variety Austrian White (still cultivated in small quantities today).
In 2014, renowned wineries from all over the world were invited to a gala wine tasting on the occasion of the 900th anniversary celebration. Among them were wineries from Germany(Schloss Johannisberg), Switzerland, Italy(Donnafugata), France, Portugal(Fonseca), Spain(Marqués de Riscal) and Oregon(HillCrest Winery). Today's Klosterneuburg Abbey Winery is owned by the Augustinian Canons Regular with the Abbey Provost Prelate Bernhard Backovsky as the largest private vineyard owner in Austria. The business is run by the managing director Dr. Wolfgang Hamm, who is supported by cellarmaster Ing. Günther Gottfried and vineyard manager Johannes Steurer. The vineyards comprise 108 hectares of vineyards in the municipalities of Klosterneuburg(Franzhauser, Steinriegel, Hengstberg, Ziegelgrub), the Kahlenbergerdorf which belongs to Vienna (old vineyard, Jungherrn, Nußberg, Raflerjoch), Gumpoldskirchen (Hofpoint, Wiegen) and Tattendorf(Stiftsbreite in sole ownership with 40 ha of St. Laurent). They are thus spread over the three wine growing areas Thermenregion, Wagram and Vienna scattered.
The red wine varieties St. Laurent, Zweigelt, Blauburgunder(Pinot Noir), Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, as well as the white wine varieties Grüner Veltliner, Riesling, Chardonnay,Pinot Blanc, Traminer, Rotgipfler, Sauvignon Blanc, Zierfandler, Neuburger and . In order to respond to the different locations and to achieve even higher quality, a special vineyard program was developed. It consists of many, targeted measures for soil vitalization(greening, return of pomace), individual foliage care to increase biodiversity (species diversity), as well as the research and preservation of old vine material. Klosterneuburg Abbey is the first winery to produce on a CO2-neutral basis and is therefore considered a pioneer in climate protection.
In the four-storey vaulted cellar built under Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740), up to 36 metres deep under the Abbey Square and walls up to seven metres thick, the wines are pressed and stored. In 2007, the newly established red wine processing plant was put into operation and in 2008 a new bottling plant. The vinification is precisely matched to the respective variety and colour. By means of computer-controlled fermentation, the white wines are fermented slowly and in a cool place to emphasize the typical aromas and freshness of the variety. The red wines are fermented slightly warmer to achieve optimum colour and .
The extensive product range comprises four lines. These are the "Lageweine" (storable varietal wines and cuvées from top vineyard sites in various wine-growing regions, with a vine tendril on the label), the "Klassikweine"(fruity, varietal wines typical of a wine-growing region, with a pencil crest on the label), "Pastellweine" (fruity, region- and varietal-typical wines, only available in food retail outlets) and "Vom Schotter" (from barren limestone gravel soils and Danube gravel). The pencil wines are closed with screw caps, the white site wines with glass caps and the red site wines with natural corks.
The absolute figurehead is "St. Laurent Ausstich" from the Stiftsbreite vineyard in Tattendorf (thermal region), which is selected from the best barrels of a vintage. This long-lasting red wine is aged for 18 months in large wooden barrels after a three-week and bottled in Stifterl (0.25 l), in the normal bottle 0.75 l as well as in large bottles(Magnum 1.5 l, Jeroboam 3 l, Salmanazar 9 l, Balthazar 12 l). Other specialities are, depending on the weather conditions, Trockenbeerenauslese and ice wines as well as DAC white wines Wiener Gemischter Satz. We also produce noble brandies(marc, fruit, wine), bottle-fermented sparkling wines, grape juice, wine jelly (from different types of grapes), grape seed oil and vinegar.